umbilical cocked tight

against the wind

my son earnest

with concentration

on Bluey’s Beach

fishing the sky




the wind shows promise

I take my youngest daughter

to the park


launched into the air

its tail streams

grabs her attention

the string slackens

as she marvels

and it falls reluctantly

I’m not much of a kite flyer

said with as much wisdom as she possesses


days later I catch her

proudly telling

I went kite flying with my dad

sometimes flying a kite

is as simple as that






just a family snap we framed

of no particular merit

more content than composition


you recognize your baby self

wailing fist clenched

wah wah wah giving voice to the scene


you are content

to register me holding you

daddy you have your happy face on

and I do




leaving the road

to cross the hedgerow at the stile

into an avenue of oaks framing

the mansion house imposed upon the hill

a vista Lutyens would devise

long summer grasses in Herefordshire


heading across

to find the shaded muddy track

back to the fieldstone farmhouse

surrounded by dry stone walls

in need of repair

smells rank and rancid from the pigsty

greeted by the hunchback

family retainer from a bleak last century past

and the gift of one warm egg

still crusted and slightly repellent to the child




another stile I need help to cross

into the blackberry wasteland

my young parents on their Sunday walk

gloved against the cold

milky sky closed over winter in Glamorgan


there is the stile where it should be

now backing onto the scar

of the motorway

not as I remember it at all