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January 2014, vol 9, no 4

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Ken Jones

My Garden and Me

My Garden and Me
growing old together
no longer troubling the weeds

Sagging on its hinges, the rusty gate swings open. Upright, shiny and smooth it once was. I well remember how I fixed the latch at the time of my diagnosis. And this mountain ash, now knotted and tangled in ivy, was then a lean, clean limbed tree.

The winding garden path narrows with each passing year. An athletic alter ego laid out the paving stones, which now seem too wide to bridge my stride.

The companionable
Clunk !
of an unfixed slab

On the left, the wavering music of our mountain stream. The wizened plank which spans it still has some pretensions to being a bridge. On the right, the steadfast stones of the Zen garden no longer look so random as once they did. Brightening after rain, their primeval lichens never seem to age.

Gleaming white quartz
year on year
the moss thickens

Cosy in my bomber jacket, I look across to where I felled those seven lanky birch to open up the view. Will this faint remorse ever leave me?

On the well worn bench an oak leaf
drifts down beside me.

And always above the trees the ever-changing, never-changing sky.