by Kate Foley

bawled as if from the summit of Everest.
Mobile phone spits metal filings
in answer.

Ferret hands dive into pockets
gargling with call tones,
quivering sacks of sound

while the train beats its own
muted tympani, more sympathetic
to the sealed amber, early evening light.

I try to ring out these six o’clock faces,
kicked like an ant-heap
into such frantic stir.

Iconic cows fly silently past the window
of my stockade of defended quiet –
remember? I ask myself,

we heard ash and air
September and summer voices
Shaker simple.

              ‘Take care of the kids.’
‘I love you.’
              ‘Mum, I just wanted to say…’

              Beautiful polyphony,
              dignified as death
              in her used apron of words.