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Tag Archives festooned


The leafless apple trees in the old orchard

are rimed with lichen. Some are festooned

with mistletoe. Late February’s sun

lights each dark twig and branch – each evergreen leaf

and silver berry. In the distant woods,

rooks call, nest-building. Unrelenting winter,

that besieges all, is beginning

to recede. Soon, curled, fleshy leaves will come

and, eventually, fragile white blossoms.

Apples will grow. The mistle thrush will do

what it does. The mistletoe will spread.

And such relentless fecundity

endlessly surprises.



You and I with fifty valentines and

February’s sun pale on the glass!

We count the camellia’s crimson blooms –

and remember, last summer, our grandchild

shivering with ecstasy the day

she chased her daddy with the garden hose.

From here, the house seems sentient, our

remembrancer – the lawns and borders and

parts of neighbours’ houses an urban landscape.

In this wooden hexagon – a half-glazed

gazebo, its blind back turned to a high

Victorian wall festooned with ivy

and clematis –