Diana Hendry

Melancholy

Two days post Christmas, waiting
at what must be the coldest railway station in the uk
for a train to take us home.

The country under ice.
Roads points us frozen.

‘Thanks for the lift, Scott! No, please don’t wait, we’ll be fine!’

The train is delayed by one hour fifty.

The deserted platform stretches to infinity.
The ticket office has shut its shutters.
The empty waiting room has seats for fifty.
Close to the ceiling at either end is an electric heater.
Off.
No drinks machine.

The train is delayed by two hours fifty.

The landscape around us offers only flatness.
No buses or taxis.

The train is delayed by three hours twenty.

A plane takes off from the nearby RAF station.
We wave.

Five hours late the train arrives.

I am in the wrong love affair.

Diana Hendry grew up by the sea on the Wirral peninsular. She’s published six collections of poetry, the most recent being The Watching Stair (Worple Press, 2018). She’s been writer-in-residence at Dumfries & Galloway Royal Infirmary; a Royal Literary Fund Fellow based at Edinbugh University; a co-editor of New Writing Scotland and a tutor on courses at Arvon and Moniack Mhor. She’s the author of more than forty books for children – Harvey Angell won a Whitbread Award and her young adult novel, The Seeing, was shortlisted for a Costa Book Award. She lives in Edinburgh.