Southgrove Road Carol Singing

by Beth Davies

My childhood blurs
in yellow light and cinnamon air,
the year irrelevant. A single Gloria
holds all my Christmas Eves: nights

when we breathe dragon-smoke, clutch
rain-crinkled paper and sing
to our streets, two tunes
at once and all out of time.
This is the closest I come

to faith; out-of-tune voices
make the lyrics feel
true, make me wonder
if the streetlamp is a star,
guiding us somewhere.