Sunday, 25 July 2010


sunday morning
warwick bound for an another day of folk fun and fun folk
waiting for the 11:13 at moor street station
a recently restored edwardian architectural triumph
with an old steam engine parked wistfully on platform three
in the gwr centenary lounge no less
i take advantage of their free internet service
(closely guarded idler's secret revealed)
ignoring the numbing doof doof of the radio
i look up at the reproachful stare
of a great western railways map dated 1909
great wasted railways!
for this period rail map resembles a contemporary road map
main lines and branch lines interweave in a tight web
the lines fan out in an irregular pentagon
its five corners:
land's end
south wales
north wales
and manchester
tellingly the hubs of the network are brum,
the welsh valleys and the severn vale
centres of industry one hundred years hence
now reduced to...well what?
this comprehensive network would take the traveller
with the aid of a bicycle
to wherever he wanted to go
to within no more than a few miles of his final destination
oh halcyon days
for the carefree

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