Piper At The Gates Of Dawn
True, back then, he was a foolish fellow
– mind lost in mazes, avant garde for fame.
The dawn he heard those warblers singing in
the willow wood ended his foppish ways.
He let his lyrics amble, breathed the songs
within the trees, came to the river bank.
The pipes of Pan unstrung his childhood pages.
He saw Ratty and timorous Mole rowing.
He waved to them. Badger, Badger, they called.
Badger he became. A life of black and white.
His habits build a fence with hammer and nail,
unplugged rhythms gives pulse to purpose.
He pins the wood as if it were untamed.
a greening thirst rooted in earth. His son
thinks him daft, hungers for things electric.
Time is money, he mutters to himself,
scoffing the bara brith his mum had made.
Cake defeats him. Binds the beat of his heart.
The stoop of cloud broods
a hunchbacked cumulus. Work beckons.
Slowly drying she switches on
another humming light
and mumbles along flowery margins
tying curtains that thread
to rituals of waking with tea
and toast and thick cut marmalade.
Repeating and rehearsing and repeating
will map the muddle of intentions
but she swims the waves with mermaids
long after the breakfast hour.
Phil Wood studied English Literature at Aberystwyth University. He has worked in statistics, shipping, and a biscuit factory. His writing can be found in various publications, most recently in: Fly on the Wall Press (Issue 6), Ink Sweat and Tears, Poetry in Public, Poetry Shed, Allegro.