Wednesday, 13 February 2019


Back to Manchester.  Him hunched,
hands in pockets, walking
down Oxford Road, the white Roller
keeping level.

My hasty glance and reflex smile
he returned, his eyes shot
with a shoulder-shrug sadness
behind the Irish blue.

He were always United, a red, though.
The best. Even Pele said so
when asked. Even better than you
they wanted to know?

But he were tragedy as well as legend,
and his search, his holy grail,
he could never find at the bottom
of that vodka bottle.

I am not ashamed to tell you I cried
when he couldn't stop,
and his liver, the second, gave out,
and ... you know the rest.

© Cath Campbell

'My dad was a heavy drinker'

Cath is a Northumbrian poet who loves eating, dog walking, and the sea. She has an MA in creative writing from Newcastle university, and has had poems published in several magazines, including Prole, Obsessed With Pipework, Erbacce, and IAmNotASilentPoet. She also has a poem published in #MeToo, a woman's poetry anthology.