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Fenceline

The prompt for today was simply to ‘write that poem that’s been lying in wait. Or use one of the prompts that you had to skip previously. Or just start something deliciously, gloriously new!’ So, I did.

I took my lead from a passage in the book I was reading last night, After the Fire, A Still Small Voice by Evie Wyld.


Fenceline

A feller stood on his patch
and shouted “Mine” so the sound
would carry to the boundary
and beyond. To any bugger
who might question the right of it.

I walked my Dad’s fence, it took
all day. The scrub on both sides
was the same, burned by the same sun.

We’ve lost the idea of land,
the feeling of what it is to
have land, to be that feller.
Beyond possession and ownership
is the rootedness of land,
the sense it gives of being
supported, held close and nourished.

They retired to a city flat, held
leasehold, and flourished. Gained, they joked,
a new lease on life. A long term one,
it turned out.

Too close a hold can
suffocate, escape can mean
breathing free again. Fences work
both ways. I never took root, took
off instead. Still, I miss the
completedness of that fenceline.