Sunday, 1 May 2016

In this Salford Street



                                                                          A Working Sheepdog
                                                          

Dear Reader,
                                                                
I know I wrote about a dog last week and apologise to those of you who, perhaps, don't like dogs, as I am writing about another dog this week too.  But this story is just so astonishing I felt I had to mention it, so those of you who didn't read it would  have a chance to enjoy it.  

A working sheepdog called Pero who lived in the village of Penrhyncoch, Ceredigion, Wales, was sold by farmers Alan and Shan James to a farmer in Cockermouth some 240 miles from his original home.  They thought he might be happier there where he would have much more individual attention instead of being one of sixteen dogs.  However, he obviously wasn't happy there and decided to trot home to Penrhyncoch.  So he did, taking twelve days to somehow get across motorways, including the M6 and the M62.  His route is likely to have taken him through the Lake District, the moors of the Forest of Bowland, and the old industrial towns of Lancashire, before passing Merseyside, Chester, and the mountains of Snowdonia.  Mrs James thought it was a complete mystery how Pero found his way home and so do I.  What kind of instinct was this, and do humans have this same instinct, I wonder?  Certainly I don't and can get lost in a small wood, and I find this journey of Pero's incomprehensible but absolutely incredible. 

As Shakespeare wrote :  'There are more things under heaven and earth, Horatio, than in your philosophy' ......  Quite so.

                                                                       *




In this Salford Street

the houses have no eyes,
windows and doors, boarded up.
These houses were home
to someone,
people grew up here,
played life's games,
made love, made babies,
made friendships last to the end.

They are all demolished now,
other people saw to that,
damp bricks and mortar,
which had served their time,
dispensible.

Nothing is left.
No shops, no pubs, no parks,
no prettiness,
nothing but rubble, dust, sadness
everywhere,
and a river running with tears.

                                                                    *

With best wishes, Patricia

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The final line of this poem packs such a punch, bringing home the sadness of the loss of the old communities. A story for our time. This is now happening all across London making room for tower blocks for the rich. Sad sad sad.
But what an amazing dog Pero is. I've heard of many a cat doing the same thing.x