On Someone Painting The Town Red
Scarlet spots splatter
grey pavement, messy end to
a night on the tiles
Freezing cold Sunday morning, crisp clear blue skies- wrapped up and laden down, I headed down from our hotel by the canal area to catch my train from Birmingham New Street to the airport . Glancing down my eye was drawn to an unexpected patch of red ..blood stains, just a few spots, so bright against the pavement, the colour of poppies. Almost as pretty. The marks definitely hadn’t been there as I walked past the same shops the day before. I wondered about the story behind the splatter – was it the result of an argument or scuffle? A punch thrown? A blood-filled mouth, harsh words spat out, adrenalin pumping, chests puffed, fists clenched, squaring up, not backing down. Sadly the all-too-familiar end to a night out in so many towns and cities (who am I kidding, probably villages and hamlets too). Aggression and alcohol – never a good combination. I could hear the sounds of the city as i tried to sleep the night before, raised voices, laughter and shouts carried on the crazy wind outside. I was glad to be tucked up in my hotel bed. Glad not to be out there in that slightly alien weekend world of pubs and clubs and shirt sleeves and stilettos. People out having fun… painting the town red. Shame then it often descends into un-fun. It gets messy. It gets violent. It leaves its mark on the city streets and on us…
Then again…it might have been ketchup.