I’m not called Poetonarun for nothing! The inspiration for this poem came on my 12 mile run around Wellingborough. The artwork, as much as it is, tries to incorporate the physical features of the town with the running shoes that I wore to pound the footpaths and cycle tracks.
I’m off for a run round the town of my birth this mid-land patch, these square miles of Earth. Starting my run in the old Market square once noisy with stall holders peddling their ware, now hushed like a baby, its almost asleep except for shops selling everything cheap. I enter the park, a hidden gem where emerald green lawns and poplars hem. Swanspool Brook, snaking muddy brown, a wildlife haven in the middle of town. Running south of the town to the Nene River where dive bombing terns swoop hither and thither. Slender necked swans jostle Canada geese and the whirr of Whitworth’s disturbs the peace. From there I pound up Turnell’s Mill Lane Where my energy levels flag and wane. Reaching the top I establish the beat, And tap out the rhythm with my feet. Slogging northwards to sprawling estates with labyrinthine roads to navigate. The white bread blandness of these courts and drives brightened by the buzz of community hives where the old are fed and the young play sport, and club members meet and tai chi is taught, and punching the air, the screams and shouts of kids set free when school is out. It’s all downhill from Redhill Grange, So the running is easy for a change. I reach the station, the Victorian quarter With roads of terraced bricks and mortar. Factories that once hummed the metallic din of boots and shoes crafted from cow skin, converted now into bijoux flats, just a stones throw from the railway tracks. Twelve miles around and back to the heart of this ancient site with a Saxon start. Successions of families have made it their home adding to the mix of the body’s genome. Its people breathe life into the streets creating community with each heartbeat. Rehomed Londoners from the East End, Caribbean islanders joining the blend, Gujarati speakers from India’s North West, East and West Africans all came as guests, Polish, Europeans and British migrants, painting this town, diverse and vibrant. I’ve pounded the pavements of this market town And reaching the church and slow right down 'til I’m under the clock in the ironstone tower with its eight huge bells chiming the hour. I’ve run right round the town of my birth... I just love this place, these square miles of Earth.