Afternoons work

Afternoons work


I like the business of working

With a hand tool that weighs

And feels right to the touch

The heft of a hammer or an axe

A wood handle and sharp edge

That balance in the hands grip

With the job of the day ahead

I hear the buzz of a chain saw

But I prefer the slow rhythm

Of what I can do over hours

That stretch through days’ time

I listen to the buzzard mew

Overhead and the jack ravens

Call of warning as I tread out

Into the orchards quietness

It’s a place I can feel the strain

And the connectedness again

Of mind and body and soul.




December 2015 002.jpgPreparing.


In this quiet time before winter draws in the light

We prepare the ground for the months of rest

Bill-hooks, sickles and cutters are sharpened

And so it’s a day to shorten and lay hedges

Birch and poplar are shedding their leaves

Oaks begin to turn though the change is slight

I hate to look at the Ash my favourite of trees

Diseased leaves hang in blackened bunches

But now is the time for the heavy work to be done

And in bad weather winter days writing begins.