Tuesday 28 January 2020

Woodland Wandering

I meet a child
who loves to wander
through open fields, tree-lined lanes
woods of tall, tall trees
reaching skyward.
She rides a pretend horse
canters, jumps and gallops
past houses leading to open countryside.
She feels free in the open air
meandering with no aim.
The fairy-ring of trees atop the hill
is a favourite playground.

I haven’t met this child
in a long, long time.
As she grew
she forgot to love the countryside
and the trees
she abandoned her play-horse
and bussed, or drove.
She forgot the exhilarated breathlessness
of running through fields.

Happily, I found her again today
as we slipped down muddy paths
in the January woods and
early morning light.
We found each other
among tall, tall trees.
© 15 Jan 20

Monday 27 January 2020

Everywhere is change

The snowdrops are abundant,
signing both the coming spring
and the lingering snow.
The croci peep like sharpened pencil tips
standing in the crayon box.
Green fingers reach through the decaying leaves
to herald spring and warmer weather
and lighter days.
The curling, drying beech leaves
are still golden.
The black crows caw
against a greying sky,
showing the merest sliver of
pale turquoise
before the rain clouds come.
Everywhere is change.

Everywhere is birth and death
side by side.
Coming and going,
growth and decay,
the old and the new.
Can one be distinguished from the other?
Can one occur without the other?

With each breath
and with each step
I feel alive.
Heat courses through the body,
reddening the cheeks
and the tips of my ears.
Eyes can see the colourful signposts
of the coming spring.
Ears can hear the cry of birds,
the footsteps of fellow walkers.
Heart can gladden at the promise of sunshine
and warm days and the need
for less layers of clothes.

And mind can delight in the underlying stillness
from which it all begins.
The stillness one knows in the
quiet contemplation of a meditation hall.
The same stillness
that you and I welcome
with each sound of the bell.
The silence that our teachers’ teachers
taught us to feel, to know, to enjoy.
That silence is palpable when we
call things by their true names.

© 27/2/11