Gardening, Aged 19


Amongst the raspberry canes,

A skirt, wellies, no pants,

And feeling not at all nineteen,

But rather, Earth-old.


The glottal stop and kickstarted breath,

As roots are unscrewed from the soil;

This fern must come out, but

Foetus buds are bound

Tight against the forceps.


Suddenly the alleyway

(Which runs alongside the vegetable patch)

Is sharp with a cider-step,

A shout and two swinging fists.



I tread beside, behind

The cockerel stride.


This wide wake of confidence and youth

Is too great for my grasp.


I follow it to the garden wall.

I let it pass.

Then I turn back to the work at hand.


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