Sunday, July 24, 2011

what is there to do here?

the boys who’d asked
what is there to do here
huddle in close
pick snails off leaves
disappear with cups
to pick “blueberries” off Brambles
return with chins and fingers
stained wine red

as we walk
comfrey leaves are stuck
to arms, chests
badges peeled and reapplied

birds become more than ducks and swans
trees acquire names like Ash and Hazel
unripe apples are picked and bitten
then kicked about
pale-green pebble-hard footballs

we progress like a higgledy-piggledy train
adults orbited by
running boys and quiet, feisty Maddie
a passerby smiles
“This is a very large family!”

I stop for a moment to hold it all
a floating lotus and lily-pad island
geese climbing the banks to join us
a glimpse of red and black and white
on a chaffinch

and beyond
the sound of a gong
a Buddhist temple bell
no one else hears

1 comment:

Annette said...

This is just wonderful. I can see those boys -- I especially love the part about picking green apples, spitting them out, and turning them into footballs. Lovely imagery.