Michael Edwards







Grey smoke from chimneys

staining the brick work

of back to back houses

where washing hangs limply

on string over alleys.


Grubby faced children

skipping on cobbles

sitting on doorsteps

waiting for fathers

in pits down below.


Fathers emerging

black faced and weary

 straight to the bath tub

 as coals in the boilers

send grey smoke from chimneys.









  • orchidee

    A fine write and pic M. Is Miss Berles going round in circles?!

    • Michael Edwards

      You're thinking of Twister Berles - he's always going round the bend.

    • Goldfinch60

      I was taken right into that place and that time Michael.

      • Michael Edwards

        The days of the monochrome photo - thanks Andy.

      • Neville

        fine words painted on the page and as well as being beautiful, Lowery sprang to mind.... Neville

        • Michael Edwards

          Yes - very Lowryesque - thanks Neville.

        • Fay Slimm

          Full circle indeed Mike - - your flow of atmosphere shows there was and is no ending to the rigid requirements of living with miners.

        • dusk arising

          Always ruunin ooutta bread me mam was..... an 'ovis dun't taste like it uused tu neevah!

          Took me back to living in the mining community of Nottinghamshire..... pit head baths/showers saved the tin bath regeime but the houses were there with smokey chimneys and stained brick.

          Well written compact story within a poem taking many a reader straight along memory lane.

          • Michael Edwards

            I recall them well - never lived in the community but did act in a couple of legal cases involving contractors which took me down the working mines as part of the investigations - ah memories.

          • Andrew Charles Forrest

            The true circular economy very well expressed Michael.
            The backbone of this wonderful country of ours... gone but NOT forgotten

            • Michael Edwards

              They really were hard times - watched a programme about workhouses the other day which brings home how lucky we are to live at the present time.

              • Andrew Charles Forrest

                Very lucky... some would say blessed

              • Suresh

                A scene straight out of a thousand movies, but your pen paints a real scene

                • Michael Edwards

                  And such scenes existed - thanks Suresh.

                • FineB

                  Hello Michael,

                  Thanks for a great write!

                  Life does indeed come full circle in your poem the bleakness of it at times.

                  Keep writing

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