Picture Stockport

Bringing the known and hidden artworks of Stockport to life

Picture Stockport in Poetry

A collection of poems inspired by the eight works chosen as part of Picture Stockport

Bramall Hall - Andy Clayton

Bramall Hall

A house, a home
Trees pointing to the sky
The pathway leads the fairy wayfarer
Darkly did we fire ancestors?
Who lives there?
The Wisher?
The last wizard of Bramall?
Day tripping on big dippers, imagining
Rollercoaster’s of possibility
Never mind the history

Bramall Hall

Ruth Ward, Abigail Betton

As if by magic
Here I am
Brought here by Pirates
Not used to such grandeur
Chimney pots like castles
Tears roll down my face
I am alone

Painting the town

Painting the Town

Laura Cooper

I wear a clotted coat
Years of painting and painting over
Gave me my carapace
Thick skins attest to the ages
You can read my strata
See the blush pink of my youth
The cool green of the greengrocers
Red as a coffee shop
Black as clothes shop
I am ledger of ambitions
Thwarted
I have faded spot where once hung a sign
Now I am unnamed
Now I stand vacant
And peel like silver birch
But today I am given a new skin
White
Blank to possibility

The Carnival - Helen Clapcot

The Dragon and the River

Ron Taylor and Laura Cooper

The Dragon

Why am I here?
Why do I bear witness
to quiet lives
Strange lights
Grey skies?
They caught me-took me
From fresh Welsh hills
Now I am a carnival dragon
Unfolded and paraded
Do they appreciate it?
Do they dance and cheer?
Why am I here?
Why am I here?
They promised me the sun
The kids were promised fun

The River

Why am I here?
What made me carve the rock
this way
As I wind in and out
Watch the crowd part
There is no logic
I run and flow
And from the silt of slums
Palaces grow
Why am I here?
It is the rivers meeting
And the bridges that run over it
Cotton threading its way through
nimble fingers on a clattering loom

Celebration - John D Dronsfield

Chimlys/Chimneys

Louise Wallwein

I fell silent
No longer needed in this town
The last heat from my fire faded
A digital heartbeat replaces the pulse of my furnace
Air thick
Sweat
Toil
Tears
And industry
cordite
crushed brick
I surrender
dancing with dust
slowly returning to earth
Now the clouds
pure as diamonds
march through the sky
The revolution sailed through

Dame Davenport - Abigal Betton Pure Innovations

Dame Dorothy

Adam Elliot and Jenny Newall

Eyes like wild Zephyrs wandering
The adventures of Robin Hood
The adventures of William Tell
The adventures of Sir Lancelot
The Buccaneers
The adventurer
Dame Dorothy has seen it all
She’s not like other Dames
Wandering through time
Wild wind wandering
A wrinkly old woman with a knowing smile
Plotting against the good guys
She’d stop you in your tracks
Fix you to the spot with those icy eyes
She plots throughout time in the depths of Stockport market
Her secret lair

Painting the town

Panting the Town

Micha Calvert

The earth coming into light
The morning sun
Raises its sail
The morning dew
Birds that sing
A whipper snapper passing by
In a cloud of fluff
The dream of trees
Blood life

Behind these windows
An artist is making coffee
Having a break he switches on the tv
Behind these windows two daughters watching a film pretending to be in a car
they listen to music
behind the windows the daughters are writing a script
They met a young man and had a night on the town

Its twilight
The woman is walking
Bag in hand
Thinking of her loved one
Who sings her lullabies
Row row row the boat gently down the stream
Merrily Merrily life is but a dream
Its twilight
The woman can’t wait to go home
She’s sure her lover has got her a present
It’s a little gift
When she gets home he’s on his knees at the door
He asks for her hand in marriage
She says yes

It’s night time
The lovers stroll through the underbank
The town celebrates
In multicolored brushstrokes

‘The Crown’ Inn - S. Garbutt

The Viaduct

Ron Taylor

The whole of our history is crammed into the viaduct arches
The Viaduct defies time
And travels through the centuries

The Crowd at County - Lucy Burgess

Faces in the crowd

Ron Taylor

Who are these faces in the crowd?
We were there
When the gates open it’s like the flood
Crowds rush in
People climbing on the banking
To steal the view
Avoiding reservoir and railway tracks

Today our waterlogged dreams come up for air
And we are going up
We were there
You are a relative who needs support
We are tribal compassionate voices
Raised as one
Gangs of us, week in, week out
Side by side
we never got as far as know each other’s names
Relative strangers

“come on get your ideas together” we chant
and you do
Today you do

Those young players who we nurture
father and son playing side by side
held aloft on the crest of this wave
Today we do not leave head down in silence
Today we do not say
“we did well to lose 2-0”
today is a sea of banners
a blue and white tide
carving out a river woven by family ties
Today we are going up
And Tonight
Friday Night is County night

Viaduct - Jackie Wagg

The Viaduct Bricks

Daniel Peter Farrell and Alison Lodder

We see you
We’re old, ancient
We’ve seen so much change
Walls covered in paste now
New posters, new ideas, new faces, new colours
We see you
Trains fly by going to London
Trains trundle to Reddish
Noises running over our bricks
We can hear the airplanes, wheels down
Ready to land
Day and night
We see you
Listening to traffic
Journeys circling our arches
Journeys of your own life
The bus station
Bikes, bells ring
the sounds of Stockport
We see you
We can smell blackness of smoke
old fires from chimneys
Diesel power drifting into the bus station
We see you
People walk around beneath our arches
Sometimes they stay the night
Make their temporary homes
Seeking protection under our arches
We see you
working,
travelling
breathing
living

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