Mersey Mersey Me

by Christopher T. George
Desert Moon Review
Honorable Mention, December 2007
Judged by E. Ethelbert Miller

Mum, you have asked that I cast
your ashes in the River Mersey,
the muddy Mersey I see broil
behind as you stand windblown
on the Pier Head landing stage,
Seacombe ferry surging to nudge
giant tires with a rubbery kiss
as sailors tie the ferry up,
the muddy Mersey that flowed
down the bottom of our road,
at Otterspool prom: expanse
of sun-glinting gooey flats
at low tide decorated with
ditched pram, kiddie’s bike:
scene I painted in the Sixties,
that hung in your living room, til
I gave it to grass-high friends.
Mersey Mersey me, I think of
you as I attend a Ripper event
in a big white marquee beside
the Liverpool Cricket Club:
rain clouds sweeping in from
the distant Welsh hills, over
the Mersey’s whitecapped waves,
past the benign cream stucco
walls of Battlecrease House,
where lived James Maybrick,
who may have been the Ripper,
Mersey Mersey me, I think of
you as I scatter your ashes.