First thing in the morning I delete 83 pieces of spam, download the five genuine emails.
Have breakfast, watch the news the postman comes late with a credit-card bill two pieces of junk mail an avant-garde magazine from New York, a haiku sequence in Irish Gaelic and Spanish Catalan and a book of short stories from Japan.
I shower and dress, make tea and toast.
The storms of last night have abated but the weather forecast tells of rain and gales. I wonder whether I'm going to bother going down to the shopping precinct where I'm told there will poetry from 11 till 3 with jugglers and puppeteers on hand too.
The cleaners come today they show up early.
Once the kitchen floor has dried I cook a frozen pizza in the microwave have it with carrots and green beans.
The weather seems fine so I venture out with my overcoat on and a hat in my bag.
A performance poet is amusing a group of primary school children encouraging them to come on stage and recite. There is a table staffed by the local library; one of the women is reading an Argos catalogue while the other seems to be promoting their "trace your family-tree" service. A piece of paper on the desk reads "Haiku is a poem of seventeen syllables".
The children are enjoying themselves most of the surrounding audience are probably their parents or grandparents.
Not enjoying himself is the man whose stall has been moved to make way for the poetry circus. He is trying to flog his stock of games consoles but the poetry is drowning out the sound of space invaders and pacman.
I leave my poems and camera securely hidden in my bag, walk off to the supermarket do the shopping take a taxi home in time for "Countdown" and the snooker.
After tea another 60 pieces of spam and half a dozen genuine emails.
Poems for Britain on BBC2 clashes with “Eastenders” so I video it. I tune into Ian Macmillan's radio 4 poetic tour and record that too for later listening.
It hasn't rained at all Tomorrow I may or may not catch up with the recordings
The town is tainted by murder. From the War Memorial on Werneth Low we look out over Hattersley, once the home of Myra and Ian, their house demolished but still something remains in the air. And the ghost of Shipman can be seen driving down Joel Lane or visiting homes in Newton where the smell of tobacco from "Senior Service"’s old factory no longer lingers.
Between the sunshine rain falls sharply. Overshadowed now by neighbours -- Ashton-under-Lyne, the capital of Tameside, where sit the council in their chamber; Stockport, whose postcode keeps the town in Cheshire; Manchester, now the “Greater” county -- and yet the market traders greet their customers with "How’s your lad today?" or "Is your missus any better?" and talk at the bus-stop is never only about the weather.
When I think of Hillside Avenue I remember the green where all us kids would play how some stayed late while I watched from my bedroom window; they saw me peeping laughed back -- pointed.
and I remember the huge bonfires we built each Guy Fawkes' how once the remnants of a rocket fell on my head and singed a patch of hair.
When I think of Hillside Avenue I remember the steam trains on the goods line that carried black dust from the colliery where my father worked to power stations which created, I was told, light and power for our nation.
and I remember wagons that tipped a pile of nutty slack outside each miner’s gate how I helped to shovel it into wheelbarrows to store in the "coil-ole" by the back door.
When I think of Hillside Avenue I remember the odour of Brylcream on the hair of my brother the teddy-boy on the hair of my sister’s boyfriends she who was “Miss England” until the day she married
and I remember the stench of urine as each day my mother tested grandma’s water; I learnt of diabetes and never again took sugar in my tea.
* * *
Now the green is a concrete carpark; bonfires are banned, but from October to November load bangs disturb night air. Council houses have been bought by sitting tenants; windows are double-glazed; the coal-hole stores a boiler that runs the central heating. Collieries have long since closed. The railway line is a footpath to a small-business industrial estate. My hair is grey. Still I do not take sugar in my tea.
On the bus to the airport with my son not to catch a plane but just to sit in the domestic departure lounge watching the aircraft taxi to their stands.
Two years ago we flew from northern winter snows via Singapore's sweltering equatorial sun to the welcome of a southern summer.
At a cottage by an ostrich farm we saw the vastness of the heavens the Milky Way resplendent with more stars than ever we saw before in a dark and silent sky then woke in the morning watched the sun break over distant snow-capped peaks
A month later we followed the sun setting over the equator as we flew from autumn back to spring.
Today we leave the far-flying planes and head for our homebound bus.
Cu autobuzul spre aeroport alaturi de fiul meu nu pentru a prinde un avion ci doar spre a sta in domestica hoinareala a plecarilor pandind taxiurile avioane spre standurile lor. Acum doi ani am zburat din zapezile de iarna nordica prin soarele ecuatorial inabusitor din Singapore spre binevenirea de vara sudica. La o vila de langa o ferma cu struti am vazut grandoarea cerurilor splendoarea Caii Lactee cu mai multe stele decat vazusem vreodata in cerul intunecat si tacut apoi ne-am trezit dimineata si am privit falia soarelui peste distantele scufii inzapezite ale piscurilor. O luna mai tarziu am urmarit soarele apunand peste ecuator in zborul din toamna inapoi spre primavara. Iar acum lasam avioanele zburand departe si ne indreptam spre autobuzele cu destinatia acasa.