i.m my mother
I see you by the
ghosted in the pane over
a garden coarse with winter
fabric: khaki and hessian.
Beneath the gloomy leylandii,
the rowan, stripped of reds now.
There are starlings stabbing at
the water-heavy lawn,
rifling the blackened leaves
under the judas tree.
You ignore their racket.
Your eye is fixed here, where
seed hangs in fat gourds
to lure the liveried finches,
the coal-tits, a robin
round as a bauble;
and every visitor
welcome as a mummer
tumbling through your
own relentless winter.
The year closes in on a winter palette,
daubs the fields in motley: ochres; umbers;
burnt sienna. Piebald greens are subdued;
gold-leaf, stripped from wind-torn trees,
tarnishes amidst rust and russet.
Only the stubborn hedgerows cling
to shivering yellows; to a bloodline of berries.
November has sloughed off its dead skin.
Over the pavements, an invasion
of rus in urbe :wind-snakes twist
in intricate braids, quick and brazen
as the dance of a harlequinade.