Along the ditch line


Along the ditch line corpses
        of ash
              and thorn
                       raise bare arms
                                   in supplication
                     to the ghost of sun to early gone.

Night comes swift and cruel,
light bleeding from a sky
that falls down from blue to indigo
                                         and burnished gold.

Old dragons gather by the wall
       breeding fire and blowing flames.
                 Stamping feet on hard ground.

A barrel sending smoke and sparks
to winter gods in hope of warmth.
But gods are cruel to city poor and destitute

Cheeks clawed raw red and tight
by gathering night
        and frost
               landing fast to claim the last light.

Lungs pull long and hard
                                           on air sharp as tacks
and its early yet. This night will be
                                           a brassic bitch
for the souls camped along the ditch

A radio in the distance
plays a jingle of Christmas
and seeds
           of greed
                      germinate in children’s minds

But those here feel
                                  only fear and hate
for closed shops and cafes
no gifts of crumbs when Christ comes
no heat from closed down vents
                                   no miracles of virgin birth.

Cold is a killer on the ditch
                                               a stone bitch
that robs blood and breath and yet
for some here death
                                   is a cut above
                                                       the rest
                                     and winter
                   is a last spin
on a losers wheel fortune.

© Dave Kavanagh @

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