Crown Road, 1962
A house of boxes, ice clustering,
the year we moved to Highfield.
Baby brother, a few months old;
I toddle in the snow. Not a wisp
of climate change; coal shifts in the grate.
Mum helpless. Rigid, my eyes roll up into
my head, sequences of fits, moments of darkness
beneath white shadow, claw prints where black
once settled, then moved on. She calls
upon the skies to empty into blue.
Home’s now a sheltering for someone else’s life.
She names it crow, black as the pit torn into sheets,
the boiler’s clinker, shot through to grass, burning
blades that otherwise would see spring.
I beg her to stand, to face the light,
while flaked patterns fall – wave from the other side.
Steve’s Dad was a poet, his Mum a watercolour artist. Steve has performed at the Brighton and Edinburgh Festival Fringes, based on his first book: Fast Train Approaching… a powerful, yet good humoured, account of life during and after breakdown and recovery, and will be doing so again at the Brighton Fringe in 2020. He has also shared other people’s stories inVoices: mental health survivors, carers, therapist, family and friends (both published by Chipmunkapublishing).
His second pamphlet of poetry, When the Change Came, was published by Indigo Dreams in 2016, and his long poem, Gaia 2020, is published by Making Connections Matter.
Steve continues to enjoy creative writing, has a daughter and son, stepdaughter and stepson, and lives with his wife, Liz, a physiotherapist, in Kent.