By the bend in the stream I can sit and think.
Not meditate on, but gently consider where we came from.
A multihued, multitude of experiences,
smells and tastes flow through my mind.
Some rain has fallen but mostly, luckily there’s been sunshine.
We drink, you the coffee, me the tea and it makes me think
vivre la difference that is you and me.
Then later, as we sit by the garden fire,
the flames licking at our constant feeding of tree choppings and trimmings
and the almost fully formed buds are forced to ripen for a brief moment,
by the instantly heated, pressurised sap; then gone.
I think on all the young men I was, but escaped from…………being.
Later your father comes and sits along and his eyes tell,
even though seventy years or more have passed,
he still lives part of his life there.
Where the buds briefly blossomed and
I understood part of where you came from,
and me, well I guess I come from my mythology.
My grandfathers, Frederick Ernest and John Henry
and all the others who went marching, before.
Later, I realise all this reminiscing has fled four hours
and the warmth of a sunny August Sunday has slipped away.
Reluctant to move, with one of the dogs for company,
I stoke the fire and wonder how many more times I’ll be able do this.
I don’t feel it’s bleak or scary,
it’s mundane and wonderful
at the same time, to be able to be.
Alan Johnson (aka AiJ) is a poet and engineer, living and writing in the beautiful Cheshire countryside.