Letter to Joe Anderson
The Futurist was loved but it was neglected
so – acting in the knowledge that love isn’t concrete
can’t strengthen walls or fix foundations
left to crumble – you ripped it out.
But I have to ask,
do you look at Liverpool
and see only bricks and water?
Because it seems you see the world in concrete.
You think you know the value of the Lime Street land?
Well how can you when you don’t understand
the romance between the people and their city?
If you knew, you couldn’t have presided over
its managed decline. You’d have nurtured it instead
and it would have done you proud.
Who do you think owns the city?
Who do you think owns a building
if not the people who made their history there?
Grandparents sharing a smoke in the doorway
before they are grandparents
The girl selling ice cream
so that she can afford a better education
The young lads who sneaked in without paying
and almost never got caught
The vagrant pissing in the alley
as he whistles out of tune.
On your watch, another block of student flats
is set to be built on their foundations.
I suppose a building can’t stand forever –
all memories fade, all histories are lost,
but as we endure this forced-ending
we ’ll make sure the same applies to you.