I ... entered the poem of life, whose purpose is ... simply to witness the beauties of the world, to discover the many forms that love can take. (Barabara Blackman in 'Glass After Glass')

These poems are works in progress and may be updated without notice. Nevertheless copyright applies to all writings here and all photos (which are either my own or used with permission). Thank you for your comments. I read and appreciate them all, and reply here to specific points that seem to need it — or as I have the leisure. Otherwise I reciprocate by reading and commenting on your blog posts as much as possible.

15 September 2009

Walking the Ridge

30 Poems in 30 Days: Day 14
Write a poem about a specific but minor memory you have from more than five, but less than ten years ago.

We were still living
around the bend
and up the hill
from Kouranga.

I set out for my walk
alone in the late afternoon
loving as always
the various trees along the road
their different tones and colours,
the calls of high birds
and glimpses of gullies.

I crossed the causeway.
The water was low.
I could see the rocks
underlying the shallow flow.

Up the rise where once
a red-bellied black
lay coiled in the sun
in the middle of the road
and I turned sharply
before coming up too close.
They are so fast and so deadly.

No snake today.
I go on down the dip
before the road straightens
by the turn-off to the Hermitage.

This day a group of men
sits at the roadside
wiping their faces and necks
and taking a drink.
Neighbours, members of the Land Council,
they’ve been clearing noxious weeds
all day along the creek.

I know them all. Good men.
But I’m suddenly shy.
I turn before I come near
and walk back the other way.


  1. Another lovely poem, and a feeling I can relate to. I can really feel the turn in both verses as well.

  2. Thank you! I wondered if the slide into change of tense worked???

  3. Oh, definitely - it gives it that feeling of a turn, and it gives the sense of routine and memory. And, perhaps most importantly, it's not even immediately noticeable... which means it's subtle enough to do all those things without whacking you over the head with it!