DAY FOUR – Roy Marshall

Election Night

Apart from the colour of my hair and two stone in weight
I’m the same as I was the night they did the wrong thing
and voted her in again on the crest of a South Atlantic
wave; the night the battery died on the way back
from my girlfriend’s house, my lips numb with snogging
and both of us too young to counteract her parents votes.
It gave out in the lane after dimming to a yellow spot,
and no matter how many times I thwacked it with my palm
I couldn’t jolt it back to life. The route was more familiar
than the unlined back of my hand, so I pedalled fast round
potholes, pulling onto the bank when cars passed, worrying
for the hospital, the sale of its land, the stars scattered
above the hedgerows and banks, rhinestones on the arms
of oaks, the black wind in my black hair and me wondering why.


Roy Marshall grew up angrily under Margret Thatcher and John Major’s governments. The last government he voted for built a new school in the village where he lives. Roy is a qualified nurse. He blogs at


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