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53. (On the drive south)

The stitches out, 600 miles of rain, our last wee-halt
in the humus-ripe woods, then Utanede by midnight.

Back seat dark, still warm. Dads hand on the wheel,
plump with bandages, roosts no. is bright & alert.

54. (Brushing my teeth in the garden)

Dawn found the ghost-farm, and fumbled lower.
Shadows have pates now: flowers inch open.

An insect whirrs at the grille. Peeking out,
the aspen is glittering. I stumble into the sun.

55. (Mum in the hammock)

For two minutes and a photograph
you put your feet up. Green morning sunshine.

For eight seconds you gaze across the valley,
swaying between a birch and pine, wishing nothing.

56. (Lengfil)

Corner snipped, the carton pumps in my hand,
& the fil flops into itself in the bowl.

So lovely & white, my spoon hovers,
a bather on the brink. Then I dog it all.

57. (Dad chopping kindling)

You've thought of it all week, the treacherous block
where the axe clanged and split your hand.

Now you have to go back. To do what you dreamt, in shock,
in the muddle of blood: be calm and its gone, you rewind...

      — Michael Peverett