This poem is sort of a companion piece to the one I posted yesterday. It was written a month or two later.
Our garden wall is a slightly unnatural
Mauvey red. It puts me in mind
Of the flats we used to paint with bricks
For the parish pantomine- every brick
The same unweathered, unlichened, unscumbled,
Straight-from-the-paint-box red. The racists
Made me do it. They scrawled our wall
With a hate message in aerosol.
What could I do but paint it out
At once? I chose the brickiest red
In the cellar. Better a pantomime wall
Than one that 's shouting abuse at the neighbours.
Still I'm sorry to see how our wall
Stands out from the walls to left and right
Which are weathered, lichened. The whole row
That faces the ginnel is beautiful
With the falling down beauty of age and rot.