All the things we saw

(All text in italics by Jarvis Cocker, from the song ‘Sheffield: Sex City’)





my first autumn. tears on my cheeks.

it’s way past bedtime. the moon hung low.

the air sick and heavy with that end of summer feeling.

why is it so hot? on the cathedral green,

the three of us made great plans to grow up.

he wanted more so he said, “can I kiss you?

can I kiss you properly?” twirling

around my bedroom to ‘wuthering heights.’

ten o’clock on Tuesday evening. he has a drink

and tries to hold my hand,thinks he’s the one.

who needs this shit anyway? I leave and scatter

his heart across the east midlands railway line.

oh babe. oh I’m sorry. his words come to me

in the middle of the night, hazy and desperate.

I don’t know why you bother, really.  

more than a year between us now

and he never stopped. get it together.





I wandered the streets the whole night crying, but

I did get over it. though the lights always remind me,

the sound of the train, the winter, the flats.

we got it together tonight. we made it. cheap vodka,

a sticky dance floor. and your eyes. your necklace.

your mouth around a cigarette. I kept thinking

of you and almost walking into lamp-posts.

the Sheffield rain piercing the puddles on the

pavement, when you said, “I think the bars

are all closed now.” my head spinning. you said,

“I live near here.” you said, “we should go back

to mine.” I started to cry.calling your name

in the rain. the lights waltzed across the ceiling.

you put your shirt on me. the world is going on

outside.on your record player Morrissey crooned:

“maybe in the next world.” when it was over

we went outside and I said, “the city’s out to get me.”



park hill

the rain had finally stopped. on a hilltop at 4am.

beneath the lights of the I love you bridge,

we sat, reading the words over and over

‘til the Sheffield sky painteditself grey with dawn.

we moved throughthere like ghosts in a place

filled with ghosts.hand in hand. we finally made it

up to the roof. a million twinkling yellow street-lights.

she never married him, you know, but I’m still

rubbing up against walls, making love to the idea

of a love that will last. the city knows all our secrets.

like when he first touched me and whispered,

“you can have it all”, but I am always

romanticising someone else’s tragedy, gliding,

like a sleepwalker, through a life I have never lived.

but it’s ok now, we got it togetherwe made it,

we really did this time.

Sophie L Wilson