2nd in Norwich Writers' Circle Open Competition, April 2013 , adjudicated by George Szirtes
Please, do step inside. There's absolutely
nothing to be afraid of. No, nothing.
You can trust me. You can see on your right
my collection. They were friends of mine, now
preserved so that I can remember them
as they were back in the day. My goodness,
the times we had! Then there was war, of course:
street-fighting, looting, rape, letter bombs, parks
made minefields - literally - and our votes
going to a strong government which knew
no nonsense. That was when I joined. I look
back occasionally but I was different,
another person. I had to alter.
Tonight, I hear soldiers' boots past my door
and my heart does not miss a single beat.
If I step outside, they're pleased to greet me.
There's nothing to be afraid of. Nothing.
I can trust them. I see the future's bright.