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Hannah McGregor

My feet carry me through the barrier
Towards the train I should be on.
The world stretches her slender legs,
And the train pulls farther away 
the faster I run.
Except it doesn’t,
And I spill into the carriage long before it’s gone.

I am on my way home, but I am not
I am somewhere back on that platform,
Always spat on but never shone.
I am back there, or maybe further away,
Maybe I am in a hospital, or at a bar

Or maybe even back on that misshapen family holiday
So many years ago:
The beach in Cumbria that is planted in my youth
Where my next meal became ash-tray sand
From the biggest wave in the world;
Where I was frozen by the ocean’s icy grip
And stung by a thousand atomic needles along my spine.
Except I wasn’t,
I was merely nudged by the mundane cold
Of British waters, that ubiquitous drizzle

Which still patters persistently 
On the window of my phantom mind
On the windows of this train

that would have made for a far better poem
had it just been missed.


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