On the shuffling Friday night commuter train, surrounded by other people, we crack open some tins and talk about the week ahead. I had spent the day watching the digital face of my cheap watch, the numbers in the corner of the screen and before we left, bumped into a friend of mine in Kings Cross, squeezed him tight, smart in his work suit. Now it’s you and me going north and it’s blue light over the Tyne and black on the platform of the little local station.
Cliff edges and blown heather. Birds equal and above us, as if on metal wires, pulled tight against the tug of the wind. Loosen them out and feel the string between your fingers. The small cottage and my godmother’s things. Waking to the sound of the waves and the smell of last night’s woodsmoke. I always started the fire and you had to finish it. Climbing the breathless half hill trying to find signal to call my birthday friend. The shape of your back as you walk the brae ahead of me.