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Elderly man In rocking chair reading newspaper on a porch. 

1970s
Reading the papers

 

Late May.  Most of the garden is promises.

A mower moans in the distance.  Here

a first yellow rose stretches and yawns.

 

Geraniums in pots on the steps are forbidden to move

like children in assemblies quietly wetting themselves.

It dries.  Sun slowly paces his stage:

 

flowers and leaves crane to follow.  Iceland poppies

shed petals like tissues, and their seed-pods turn into tracers.

(Gravel and paving and rubble

 

being equally hospitable, their aim is ruthless

self-seeding.)  Clouds dawdle like onlookers.

A breeze nips in and causes a little commotion.

 

Leaves twitch like ears – a garden never completely

relaxes.  Though no-one is here except me in a chair,

doing nothing, slowly history happens.

 

 

© Peter Wallis

Picture 10278026, photograph  by H Armstrong Roberts, 1970s

 

 

Peter Wallis is three times winner of the Thetford Open Poetry Competition, winner of the Barnet Competition and of the Living With Dementia poetry competition. He won publication of a pamphlet, Articles of Twinship, in the Bare Fiction Debut Poetry Collection Competition 2015 and was shortlisted in the National Poetry Competition 2016. He has had poems published in New Zealand and Germany, and has been widely published in UK journals.  He is a former Eastern Arts Association Visiting Writer and a Primary School Poet in Residence. He is currently Submissions Editor for the UK charity Poems in the Waiting Room.