Her world and mine are different –
they weave and thread around each other –
her stories told in sounds and scents
that I’m too dulled to grasp,
my world of words and words,
and blades and wheels
and engine noise.
So when we meet like this –
me at the gate, her in the deep path
carved by the tractor,
shaded by the green growth
of the maize – all we can offer
is a silence. Her silence
is the wisdom of the prey,
a risk assessment. Mine
is the silence of enchantment.
I seek to trap her
with my gaze, my fascination,
my delight. She’s wondering
if I bite.
Our worlds touch.
Something changes –
a wren trills an alarm call,
a quad-bike starts up
half a mile away. She moves.
Stops. Waits. An ear flics. She moves on,
up to the hedge line,
through some secret passageway, and off.
I wait, of course,
hoping that she’ll return,
knowing she’s gone,
a shimmering absence,
forming a different silence –
a small void, and then
it all moves on,
the rook caws, the cow bellows,
and the world spills in.
Sherry is hosting earthweal this week, and asks us to think about encounters, meetings, communions with the natural world.
The Christmas Hare
In a snowy field one Christmas Eve
I spied a windswept hare
leaping and gambolling
in the frosty air.
The tawny coat beguiled me,
framed by the dazzling white
of the wintry blanket
spread out for the night.
As I watched the hare cavorting,
the sun began to sink
and the backdrop to its dance
flushed a bashful shade of pink.
The creature turned and saw me,
its eyes of amber sparked,
and with that the snowy field
vanished in the dark.
This poem is by Kim Russell, who Writes in North Norfolk. She is a lovely poet, and I particularly admire her attention to detail, and the beautiful and exact images of nature she evokes.
The wild hare
“Show me your magic” said I to the hare
Crouching before me, wild and strong and free –
She turned and was away before I reached her –
Why should she stay and show herself to me?
The rabbit is a soft, domestic thing,
The crow brings death, the fox, they say’s a liar,
The lark calls up the summer and the spring
But the wild hare runs towards the fire.
We make a story up for every creature
We give them tales we’re not prepared to own.
We turn a moral out of every feature,
Forget that we, and they, are flesh and bone.
They say the hare’s a witch. I think it’s true:
I’ve seen the grey hare leaping to the moon.