Alice Alexandre (Third prize)
The Godolphin and Latymer School, London
Wind ruffles my hair. I place one foot in front of another,
Carefully. The pavement’s uneven. Walk only on the stones.
Never the lines. Hair stuck on my lip makes me pull faces.
I look like a clown, blown around. And cold in the wind.
Stone, stone, foot? I bump into a stranger and look up wide-eyed.
Our faces meet for the briefest moment. We’re so close.
I see my face reflected in dark pupils. I’m surrounded by red and white.
The colours merge together at a point behind me, behind my head.
We both mumble an apology, I step sideways and look away, behind.
Behind the stranger, at the red and white bricks mirrored in my eyes,
Mirrored in their eyes. Each house is different. I walk forwards.
Lined flower pots, a green door, a blue one, a Welcome doormat.
All founded on red bricks, with white roof-lions and black drainpipes,
Each with a distinct, subtle something. I glance behind me, the stranger is gone,
Indifferent. A woman steps out with a slight shiver, crouches and disappears.
A door bangs shut and two empty milk bottles hide behind a corner by the door.
I reach my house, an identical twin of the one on the left.
Are we the echoes of others? Are we all the same? Am I the stranger,
Seeing the same houses? Or are they singularly, obscurely different?
I have my memories, my warmth, my coldness. Do others? Do you?
- Date February 9, 2015
- Tags 2006 A Building - Winning Poems