About teatime, when the coals were glowing
liquid orange and cream, strands of soot
would catch on the fireback,
flickering like torches in a forest.
And behind the wireless’ fretwork facade
the valves were alight with Uncles and Aunties,
soothing, articulate, evocative and refined,
bringing us safely to the Weather and the News.
We listened to the same wonders, you and I,
tuned the static and the soot to pre-pubescent stories,
sensing there was something else
beyond the sideboard.
What if we could have been told –
by a clairvoyant Romany perhaps? –
that, out in the ether,
there was someone we would want to love forever.