Lines between Trains, by Clare Rainsford

The departure boards almost a poem –

Aberdeen, Dundee, Newcastle, York.


The adverts too glossy.

More people than I’ve seen in a week.


I come from the south. From a single-track station

with a ticket machine that sometimes works,

Where the cutting is overgrown with ragwort and cow parsley,

Where a dunnock flits suspiciously to her nest in the crack under the eaves.


Here, in the between-place, trains are ten-a-penny.

And I am neither here nor there –

queasy, thirsty, tired and footsore.


And the pigeons, swooping startlingly through the crowds

or hobbling beadily around my feet,

when I left them cooing on the chimney in the early morning,

the hollow echoes waking me at dawn.


Copyright the author and first published by Friends of Rowntree Park 2015.


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