My Winter in Summer

I heard the crunch of tyres on the stony ground still,

as it stopped on the grassy verge and outpoured

chattering children and gathering grownups. Nearby 

the yapping of a small dog, running freely amongst 

the cars disturbing someones quiet moments, and

threatening to knock over the frail taking a walk

in the afternoon sunshine – after a long year sitting.

I felt the sting of tears as I stood alone, cherishing

the sights and sounds despite my sorrowing soul.

====

I look over the cliffs and see the the lumbering

shapes of cows stopping to munch at the green

grass, kept fresh by the rainy days, they chew 

slowly dripping saliva as they relish the juiciness,

and then they slowly subside onto a fresh patch

and resolutely chew their sweet cud while small

patterned calves run between them on their too

long wobbly legs, eating the grass and drinking

the much needed sustenance from the udders.

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I saw overhead and heard the call of Choughs

as they jounce through the air showing off their

joy at the world. A greenfinch zee zees in the

blackthorn and a charm of goldfinches swarm

around the dandelion clocks chirping. High

on a tree a blackbird calls and then a thrush 

puffs out his breast and sings a song to warn

of coming storms and yet the joy in his heart

tumbles from his beak into a my bleak living.

====

I walk on and hear a child cry with delight at the

sight of the choices of ices and eyes wide they

look at labels of chocolate, honey, blueberry til

a decision with precision, a waiting smile, hands, 

ready to receive the precious taste of holidays 

and special events that have long since been 

a rarity in their vicinity and well merited now,

melting into small mouths and reviving them

with sugars and colours and tastes and smells.

====

Everywhere there are daisies and buttercups

brightening the brown earth where nature 

produces orchids early and harebells late,

bluebells to mirror a sky of blue on earth,

garlic to fill the air with a pungent delight

and blackberries flowering, preparing the

fruit of jams, jellies, crumbles and pies.

All through them the gorse spikes shine 

gold, spreading their honey scent wide.

==

I walk on with winter in my wretched heart, and 

return towards my home poignantly pondering,

wondering, and wanting to applaud the joy

and hope in all those happy sticky faces, 

and gritty shoes and wished again that my

little ones were here amongst them – and not

locked away by a vile virus that blocks them. 

mocks my aching empty arms and I look at

at the summer through a veil of trickling tears.