Poem by Harry Gallagher (UK)
Published in The Ofi Press issue 45
Euan From Keith
Euan from Keith knows the truth about trains,
his old black and whites couple steamers in time;
each crumpled pithead, all char and grime,
shunted into his albums for days when it rains.
The final pit pony, blinking blind into light;
all tangled mane and broken by toil,
about to leave slack for green and topsoil,
sits by spent boilers, cases wafer slight.
Spectres of drivers and stokers, ablaze
with pride at their trail from coke ovens to pit.
Black diamond eyes and fingers of grit
and stories to burn at the end of their days.
Tracking through kingdoms of iron and coal
and every branchline to be found in between;
go buy a ticket from a modern machine
but ask about the journal that houses his soul.
Harry Gallagher has had work published by The Stare's Nest, Alliterati, The Font Journal, Black Light Engine Room, The Fat Damsel, the RNLI, Rebel Poetry, Material and more. He currently has two pamphlets available - Dark Matter III (Black Light Engine Room Press, 2014) and How It Is; Snapshots From A Northern Town (Heddon Quarry Press, 2015). A new pamphlet, Chasing The Sunset is due out in January 2016. Harry performs regularly across the North of England and is co-founder of The Stanza, a regular poetry evening in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne.
Image: 'Woodhorn Colliery Pithead' by Draco 2008.