Homes Under the Hammer

When I get there, my friend is fast asleep

with nail clippings scattered on his knee

in the dayroom’s baffled light. I wake him gently.

‘I don’t know where I am.’ ‘You’ve been asleep.’


Homes Under the Hammer is on the BBC.

We manage, once we find his stick, a turn

around the block. He mithers about his hat,

all shifting sand, in peril on the sea.


I take his arm, point out cherry blossom

(petals on a black taxi) as if spring

could blow his mind. But how can he withstand


the rising sea: the broken home, his darling

pottery collection auctioned off to no one

he could know, lovers lost with all hands?