The darkening sky is almost mauve
Down towards the horizon smudge-mark greyish beige
In the distance maybe mists are gathering
The lights of buses and of fast-food shops
Offer a choice of bright and simple colours
The signs are a good deal more complicated
The forms within them seem to be repeated
It’s easier to focus on the lights.
Let’s say I understand the urban picture
Letters form meanings like “kebab” and “sale”
But in the unlit figures of the dark
In with the changing skies
The overarching darkening mysteries
There still may be some messages I miss.
I roughed out this poem in my mind standing on the platform at Chelmsford railway station coming home from work on a winter’s night, looking over the lights of the town centre.