This morning I met Steve the Poet
He was eating his toastie breakfast outside the Deli.
Heard about the local poet.
Approached him. He looked very approachable.
His features are those
of someone who spends a lot of time outdoors.
Grey bearded. Looks up at the grey-bearded interrupter of his progress on the toastie.
Confirms he is indeed Steve the Didsbury Poet.
I tell him I write poems, too.
With little encouragement, he pulls out his poems
From his carrier bag.
They are kept, loose-leafed, in a red folder
which has seen better days.
Says he doesn’t publish them.
I say I don’t publish my poems either.
Steve does open-mic readings, doesn’t like to call what he does performances.
The poems are collectively a love-letter to his life companion.
I want to record our conversation, take out my phone.
Wrong, find I have forgotten my phone.
Somehow, our talk gets round to the Universe.
I tell him about the spaceship that sends photographs back to Earth
from the end of the Universe.
What do they look like, he asks.
Like stars we see when we look up, I say.
I’ll show you on my phone.
Wrong. I have forgotten my phone.
One day, Steve will come back again for his breakfast.
I will have my phone that day, and will show him what
the view from the end of the Universe looks like.