by Alexandra Carr-Malcolm

My love affair with Yorkshire,
is strange to the extreme,
the rain comes down in stair rods,
and puddles turn to streams.

Flint faced buildings stand proud,
the natives just the same;
hard with a directness,
reflecting poverty’s pain.

“Aye up love,” and “Ta duck,”
a mantra of the North,
a warmth and loyal passion,
found around the hearth.

Depleted coal face scenery,
ghost towns from the past,
mine the depths of politics,
betrayed by bluest lass.

Coal-dust mottled snowscapes,
contrast the wuthering heights,
bleak outstanding wilderness,
the slag heap moors by night.

My soul belongs in Yorkshire,
with Brontë, Hughes, and Moore,
this northern heart keeps beating,
‘til death doeth close the door.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: I grew up in and around coal mining communities. My Grandfather, uncle, and cousins worked as miners. I saw the devastation caused in the 1980s when the coal mines were systematically closed down one by one. This left the once-thriving communities to waste away into ghost towns of poverty. As a child I had a fascination of the coal-dust mottled snow. Within hours of pristine white snow settling, it was soon speckled with soot and coal dust, as it melted it soon became a grey slurry of slush. The dominating slag heaps were an imposing sight on the skyline and became a rare elegant beauty when covered in snow.

IMAGE: “Frozen Canal” (Sheffield, Yorkshire, UK) by Darren Galpin. Prints available at fineartamerica.com.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Alexandra Carr-Malcolm was born and raised in Chesterfield, Derbyshire. She now lives in Yorkshire, and works as a freelance British Sign Language Interpreter within the Yorkshire region. Alex has been featured in five collaborative anthologies by Dagda Publishing where part of the proceeds are donated to worthy charities. Her first anthology Tipping Sheep (the right way) was released in 2013. Currently, Alex is working on her second anthology to be released later this year. Her poems can be found on her blog www.worldlywinds.com.