Staring out the Window of a Leicester Terrace

A bland uniform sky over a bland uniform town.

Red brick and slate grey with odd smatterings of beige,

perhaps the odd orange and carrot artwork from a first year student.

Shaven headed men in tracksuits drink Tyskie lager on the street corner.

It’s only 10 am.


Oh look.

They’ve put up another block of hideous,

generic student flats.


Give me fishermen’s cottages and random lobster pots in the street….

Circling gulls and salted air with headlands and ruins and men with pipes.

I’d forego the heels for cobbled lanes and steep little alleys

to explore and wander. The only gulls in Leicester

are found in Maryland Chicken.


Give me multi-couloured tat shops and bollocks to Poundland,

a pub that’s not a Wetherpoons where the wretched wait to die.

Give me a bucket and spade and bright purple crocs

because dignity is such a townie thing

dontcha know?


Take my internet, take my phone,

Freeview telly, that’s enough

with local channels banging on about tides and fishing.

Let no one find me unless I wish to be found,

painting on the cliffs

or writing on the sand.


Give me paper, canvas and a kitty cat,

and a view to the edge of the world.

Never let my wine glass get empty

or my tobacco run out,

then you will find me content.

Just mad woman talking to the sea.

by Tamlyn Ailsa MacPherson


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