The reason my sister was screaming
was that the cloth I had grabbed
and used to mop up spilt black tea
was our mother's unshakeable favourite.
There was no going back.
I hid it in the shed.
That evening, in an unannounced first
my mother went out herself to get the coal
and returned to swat me around the front room
with the carbonned tanninned tea-cloth
of enormous sentimental value.
There was anger
glittering and transient
as the colours in a just caught fish.
Her last wish was that her ashes
be brought back to Ardrossan.
The ground is full of famous men.