Even after all this time
gran in her long black shawl
bothers stall holders
down Great Homer Street market
beating them down for a pound
of mince, one onion, two carrots
and a bottle of stout. Every
Saturday morning it’s harvest time.
She scuttles up the hill
clanging the bell of her tongue
against neighbours’ brasses
complaining at Fate’s price rise,
plus the cost of repainting the crucifix
at St Matthew’s. They say
she’s the hardest woman in Liverpool.
Some claim! but her detractors
faint before her like dustbins
on dustbin day, in the wild gusts
of her resistance to giving a damn
what anyone thinks about her
or her laughable debts.

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