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Swaddling


It was summer when she passed -

we knew come spring she would not last.


But as fresh buds broke from dead wood,

the tree stump bark cork cambium

erupted, unexpected growth,

we set our minds to recreate,

wrapped in those tie-dyes, student years,

free spirited, our crazy route -

wherever wheels led, patchwork quilt.


The golden beetle, sixties beat,

with petals painted engine end,

exhausted smoke, herbaceous mist,

above tired tyres, poor tarmac grip,

we blared our Massachusetts air.


Amongst pricked gorse of butter milk,

where heather bushed in purple rug,

and ling blushed swags for peewit wings,

we reminisced on heath surrounds

with lizard whips and butterflies.


We lay on turf, moss bed of peats,

shared sunbathe near an adder brood

and watched the glare drop from our earth

as cool pulled lower down the snake

in the question mark, our beading eyes,

saw what we knew dreamt, hoped and felt.


May we stay here in cling sarongs,

two folds, but one in chrysalis,

a swaddling band for pyre cloth,

await the dew on resting eyes,

a serene ending, all our days?


First published by Runcible Spoon


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4 Comments


Nigel Smith
Nigel Smith
Feb 15, 2023

Wonderfully evocative, for me an air of poignancy which just added to the enjoyment of the read, I liked the scene-setting couplet at the beginning also.

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John Dallison
John Dallison
Feb 14, 2023

😍 Wonderful work! Those were the tie-and-dies, my friend...

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Alison Blevins
Alison Blevins
Feb 14, 2023

Very enjoyable and reminded me of lots of wonderful memories wrapped up in the vehicles I have owned


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Debbie Dalton
Debbie Dalton
Feb 13, 2023

lovely read, brought back memories


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