He’s been up since 4am
flogging fish at Billingsgate Market.
It’s 7pm and his fingers have the strength
to beckon us on to the road.
He doesn’t want us to slip
on the skin of ice that’s covering the path.
You are in my arms. He says he likes your hat
and you wave and he waves and says
he has a daughter a year older than you.
His other two kids are teenagers
and the age gap is wonderful for babysitting
like last night when he danced at a gig
with his wife until the morning arrived
with the smell of fresh fish and opportunity.
He tells you he’s off for a long bath
and you ask if he will play with any toys.
© Carl Burkitt 2022