Made in Preston, the website about Preston, Lancashire


Poem from;

Read about the film here;

Picture a large steam locomotive trailing a cloud of steam, travelling fast and pulling a long windowless train of red carriages, the Royal Mail, through the night past Carlisle, over the border and climbing over the hills to Glasgow. Also the Scottish hills with birds in their nests and sheepdogs stirring.

Night Mail (first verses)

This is the Night Mail crossing the border,

Bringing the cheque and the postal order,

Letters for the rich, letters for the poor,

The shop at the corner and the girl next door.

Pulling up Beattock, a steady climb:

The gradient's against her, but she's on time.

Past cotton-grass and moorland boulder

Shovelling white steam over her shoulder,

Snorting noisily as she passes

Silent miles of wind-bent grasses.

Birds turn their heads as she approaches,

Stare from the bushes at her blank-faced coaches.

Sheep-dogs cannot turn her course;

They slumber on with paws across.

In the farm she passes no one wakes,

But a jug in the bedroom gently shakes.

(W H Auden)

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17 February, 2016 Contact the site author