Lost Property Office, Capwell Depot

by Niki Mullins


Collecting your bags, I dimly recall 

My dad, Pat, carrying me in here shoulder high. 

Conductor bag jangling as he bagged the cash. 

And we’d sit in the canteen watching the buses being washed 

Out back, while he’d let me sip on his coffee and cream.


My messages laden mother would come pick me up. 

I’d insist we’d sit upstairs, going home on the bus.

Upstairs, on the one in front, he’d be waving at us.


I reclaim your shopping and add it to my own,

Under the combined load, struggle to the door.

In the attendant downpour, flailing for a cab.


He’s lighter now, than I was on his back,

But he wouldn’t want it, and I’ve never asked.

Haven’t seen him take coffee since, neither, white nor black.