That heavy silence
inherently stencilled
The fences, gardens,
trellises, ramshackle but
An evident
safe haven
set back from the traffic
From the centre’s
crowds and revelry
a place where nothing happens
In each contained
unit, furtive rooms lurk
behind uncurtained
windows lit from some
light deeper inside
or the television’s
lapping blue; neighbours
parties sounding
through the walls
The gathered ornaments
less showy than
a record, artefacts left
modestly in sill corners
A quiet rests over
the streets capturing,
containing broads strips of
becalmed grey sky, bisected
by passing flight paths
Where you can stand
in the road, tracing
the cracks worn in
the tarmac, watch the
slumping course of
hedgerows, these
understated borders
And you can hear
nothing but
slight birdsong on
the indifferent breeze
and the steady warm pulse
of trains passing
at a distance
lulling the neighbourhood
to sleep; Comfort
the anaesthesia
we inhale as
relaxing, we
harden to the
faster currents, to
anything not
routine and
familiar to these
idyllic flat-pack pop-up
eddies that run
a thread the length
of the country – and
could be anywhere
across it - this
launchpad and steady-
state; Home.

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