Thursday, 1 June 2017

From 1996 to 2017 (An emotional history off tragedies in Manchester looking at things from the outside)

In 1996 when the IRA blew up the Arndale
I was barely able to leave my house
After getting mugged the night before
Which left me with a major limp
For the next 18 months or so
And forced me to ring around friends
That I knew would normally be there
Praying they would be at home.

In 2007 I got led out of my works
Viva an underground tunnel
I hadn’t known about previously
After it was deemed unsafe outside
To walk around the corner as normal
When a hurricane dragged a bollard
Through the Chief Exectuive’s car
And other cars onto the next street.

In 2010 I ended up leading three women
I worked alongside at the Co-operative
To Manchester Piccadilly Train Station
Like James Bond mixed with the Pier Piper
Avoiding all of the bars laced with drunk fans
Just before Ranger’s Europa Cup final
At Manchester City’s Ethiad Stadium
Just before it exploded into chaos.

In 2011, I was getting drove back home
By a kindly Ambulance Crew
Hours after getting registered with Diabetes
When we drove into a gang of youths
And barely reversed out alive
Looting a shop I used to go in for
A sandwich nearly every morning
On the way into my work.

In 2017, I walked past
Manchester Victoria Train Station
About a half a hour before
A terrorist took the lives off
22 people including children
And left me barely able
To sleep for two days afterwards
Laid in complete shock.

Each tragedy or event
Staining emotions
No matter how close
I was to the action

Cherry-picking memories
Into frozen images
Across feelings
Stuck in time

Reprinting each day
Over and over
Into a compressed version
Of Groundhog Day

Shooting grief from my heart
No matter how close to the front I was
Or whispered in braille rain
Tapping in shadow like tears

Brining my eyes
Pushing my grief aside
And carrying on
Like so so many others.

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