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Source: Adults

Author: Rhona Aitken

Title: Great Pulteney Street - in Bath

Great Pulteney Street - in Bath

I go shopping every day

for this and that;

things to wear, things to eat -

ordinary things.

Honeyed beauty warms the days

as I walk down Georgian splendour.

Above, massed chimneys tower

over flimsey aerials;

slates sloping onto high-perched gables

whose occupants have gazed

upon those bustling below

through generations.

They have heard the clip-clop of horses,

the cries of ‘Lavender’ and ‘Rag-and-bone’,

the rustle of furbelows

and the march of military men.

Those chimneys once swirled with pungent smoke,

and down the street carts trundled,

heavy with sacks of hard-mined coal,

while upstairs tweenies swept the ash - until

through litanies of time these high-homed voyeurs

came to be gazing upon me, and bustling others

on our way to purchase things

that they had never heard of.

We have absorbed the world outside

our comfort zone,

so I shop for avocado pears, and passion fruit.

I pass motor-cars marooned in passive parking.

No clip-clop here - no broughams

by the kerb-side. Yet, somehow -

as I walk along I feel their presence.

Those ribbons, wigs and bonnets

have not faded quite away.

There are shadows.

Perhaps the honeyed beauty of Bath stone

has absorbed their being,

given them a life.

There seems such a palpable presence

that is so companiable, so alive.

I smile as I walk its length -

somehow I am never lonely in

Great Pulteney Street.

Published on writebuzz®: Adults > Poetry

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