The Aliens of Birmingham

The grey turns to black on a cold evening,
as the night sky settles over Birmingham.
Buskers on New Street play songs and sing
festive rhymes of cliché hooray.
Lights dazzle and glisten above the streets
to guide the greedy consumerist;
through bloated shops of treats
to tick off an earache from a child’s list.

A multitude of scents hang in the air:
like chestnuts roasting and rich wine mulling;
sizzling slabs of meat that have men lulling;
sweeties and diabetes are everywhere!
Loved ones huddle up in their herd;
suits turn up their collar and iPhones;
babies and children are chauffeured
before they chill to their little bones.

Yet below the hum and joy of Noel
lies the ones who have no cheer;
nor songs to sing or tales to tell
about another solitary year.
They watch us steal a glance at them,
in an urban zoo and they’re the creatures.
Filthy and fetid, rotten fur;
nothing but boozy, street side scum.

With hearts as heavy as our shopping
and clothes as light as our conscience,
they hobble past a crowd uncaring;
a society lacking moral sense.
Carrying a stale sleeping bag
for the harsh chill of the winter night:
a mobile home under the starlight
as flimsy as a dishevelled rag.

Christmas is here, but not for them,
who instead spectate the holidays.
The aliens in Bethlehem;
for those who cannot pay, cannot stay,
Except there are no miracles today
and no divine intervention.
Just numbness and sorrow on Christmas Day
for the vagrants of the nation.

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