A curtain of rain sweeps up Klostergaten
Veiling Bergen’s tree-swathed heights,
Sending us scurrying for the café
Where we order beer and flat white
And shelter beneath its awning.
Sitting at pastel pink and green tables
Bright against the grey wet afternoon, we sip
And watch a boy splash his skateboard
Through the torrent that floods the gutter
And threatens to lap around our feet.
After the rain we walk, exploring the timber-house
Lined lanes clinging to the city’s steepled flanks,
And its gingerbread row of Hanseatic warehouses
Once filled with stockfish, the stiffened, desiccated corpses
Of sleek, silver-scaled, sea-teeming cod.
And find a blue eyed cat, white and grey tailed,
Framed in the angle of a red and blue door,
Poised like a Suiseki, a splash of life and colour
Against austere white timbered walls