(after Michael Rosen)
They’re dressed in civvies, all smiles
when they first come knocking at your door.
They want you to play their clean-up game:
knock knock music of the segregation chairs.
They keep the uniforms of fancy dress
pressed and under wraps, hanging
in the sardine compartment of the wardrobe.
In the small hours, when you and I
are smooching, they polish metal,
pass the parcel trappings of the torturer.
Before long they’re parading as charades,
helmeted, through tin pot streets.
If the cake fits, eat it. Beware of candles.
There will be bags to take home.
If all the trees on the Mirabat were streetlamps
and the hum of the river was a motorway
and the snow peaks on the horizon
turned to tower blocks,
and the field where the horses graze
was an aircraft factory
and the swallows were doodlebugs
detonating the touchpaper sky,
what would become of you and me?
Will you hold my hand in the future’s bunker?
Shall we make plans for when we get out of here?
While coltsfoot grows through cracks in the concrete,
can we give it another try?
Sue Kindon’s poems have appeared in The Interpreter’s House, The North, Antiphon, Popshot, and The Rialto. She was awarded The Maryport Poetry Prize 2012. and Poets and Players Open Prize, Manchester 2013. She lives in The French Pyrenees.