Wind in the poplars and a broken branch,
a dead arm in the bright trees. Five poplars
tremble gradually to gold. The stone face
of the lion darkens in a sharp shower,
his dreadlocks of lobelia grown long,
tangled, more brown now than blue eyed.

My friend dead and the graveyard at Orcop,
her short ride to the hawthorn hedge, lighter
than hare bones on men’s shoulders, our faces
stony, rain, weeping in the air. The grave
deep as a well takes the earth’s thud, the slow
fall of flowers.

Over the page the pen
runs faster than wind’s white steps over grass.
For a while health feels like pain. Then panic
running the fields, the grass, the racing leaves
ahead of light, holding that robin’s eye
in the laurel, hydrangea’s faded green.
I must write like the wind, year after year
passing my death day, winning ground.