Tuesday, 26 April 2011

poem fragments



It seems a while since there was any actual poetry on this blog, so it's time to redress the balance. As I'm working my way through Patrick Whitefield's "The Living Landscape", I've begun to write a sequence of poems about my home territory. Here are bits of the newer ones, still in draft form.

(from)The Territory of Rain
This is the territory of rain.
It is king here, more than cold or wind,
and all living is by negotiation
with flows and falls of water.

Earth and sky are heavy with it.
Peat grips it like a miser's fist.
River runs muddy as it sloughs
the silt from bank and hillside.
It winks between grass stems,
silvers pot-holes in the tarmac,
attacks roofs with soft persistence,
slips between slate and timber.

(from) Grounded
In the gardens the soil is deep, dark and full
of broken china, rubble of half-bricks, the bony
broken bowls of clay pipes. As I dig the kitchen bed,
seeds from other gardeners, poppy, columbine,
marigold and wild pansy, come to light, and flower
rowdily among the onions. Neither first here
nor last, I leave seeds too – borage, nasturtium
blue-flowered alkanet. They'll never be rid of me -
I'll be here, recidivist gardener, grounded on earth.

5 comments:

Marion McCready said...

These are lovely, especially the second one. 'The territory of rain' is a wonderful title.

Elizabeth Rimmer said...

Thank you Marion!

Hilaire said...

This is inspiring! And yes, wonderful title.

Pomona said...

They are lovely - I wish it were Territory of Rain here - we have had no rain for ages, and are having to do far too much watering for the time of year. Patrick is one of my heroes - he taught my husband and son permaculture, and I love the Earthcare Manual. I didn't realize you were a permaculturist as well - sorry for being so slow!

Pomona x

Elizabeth Rimmer said...

Thanks, Pomona. We are getting short of water here too - it doesn't happen often! I got into permaculture last year; it seems such a profound and sympathetic way of approaching our life in the world.