The road ends, but the journey continues...

Giving Voice: Woman In A Café (poem)

While reading through Andrew James Murray’s newly published collection of poetry Heading North I was particularly struck by his poem, Woman in a Café.

Inspired by the memory of a woman who used to come into the café he frequented during his lunch break while working in Manchester, her fingerless mittened hands clutch bunched plastic bags while two worlds converge if only briefly but forever remembered.

woman in a cafe two
Re-printed with permission.


  1. Lulu

    Laura, thank you for sharing this poem, which is simultaneously beautiful, striking, poignant… and troubling.

    • laura bruno lilly

      You’re very welcome…your comment says it all.

  2. Donna@GWGT

    Ha, I had to Google Ancoats. News to me. The poem has wonderful imagery. Easy to feel a part of the place.

    • laura bruno lilly

      Me too!!!! It helped me to get a better understanding of the history of the environment in which this piece was written…

  3. Anna Scott Graham

    What striking observations; “through an avalanche of sugar and salt”, oh beautiful….

    • laura bruno lilly

      What a visual…

  4. Andy

    Thank you for reproducing this poem, Laura.

    • laura bruno lilly

      But of course! I am honored to present it here. Not only as a work of (he)art, but as a beautifully crafted means to showcase the life of one homeless individual. Giving Voice to those who have no voice…

      • Andy

        It is my honour to be but a small part of your inspired series. Thank you.

  5. Bob

    After reading and feeling the poem I continued to browse and came across the acoustic guitar quartet playing the “farewell to Stromness” that you posted a while ago. Loved it then and now. I even tried to do another “Like” but I got a dirty look from WordPress.

    • laura bruno lilly

      Bob: So glad you landed here for a bit! (pun intended 😉 )
      Andy will be pleased that you ‘felt’ his poem…that’s a high compliment indeed. After reading his Stromness poem, I gained a greater depth of appreciation for Farewell to Stromness (one of my favorite pieces as performed by the LA Guitar Quartet shown in the post you mentioned). That piece of music draws me in and just doesn’t let go…
      And, thanks for the virtual ‘Like’ HA!

    • Andy

      Thank you Bob for reading the poem. And I too love Farewell To Stromness. For my introduction to it I thank Laura.

  6. L. Marie

    I love that one too, Laura. Andy is a very keen observer. I’m so impressed with his poetry. 🙂 He makes even the commonplace resplendent. 🙂

    • laura bruno lilly

      Yes, indeed he does.
      Of course, if not for you/your blog, I’d not have been introduced to his work. Hopefully my posts and references of Heading North will serve to further its reach to others as well.

      • Andy

        I thank both of you for being part of such a considerate and helpful community of readers and writers.

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