walking archive

(NaPoWriMo, day 19: ‘write a poem based on a ‘walking archive’.’ The idea was to go on a walk, gather a collection of objects, bring them back and use them as inspiration for a poem. I felt I’d done versions of that a few times recently so decided instead to collect snippets of the conversations on our walk today chronological order. I like the way paths can hold memories of specific walks and talks so this is an addition to my archive of those…)

i.
how good it would be to camp again
why rebus turned to drink
how to learn the songs of birds
and who will keep the cricket club going while
nothing is happening
and what if the key snaps off?
how pedals going backwards dig into your foot
how long it’ll take to stop walking wide
and what a new normal might be.

ii.
walking speeds while
taking pictures collecting words
and how really nice fields
on one side can mean
you miss the path on the other.
past walks with people now far away.
no-hands stile-crossing
and the mud that stays
whether it rains
or not.
can water do precision cutting?
the pleasures of sitting in rivers or those
of being on a cricket pitch first sunday
of a new season.

iii.
how to manage flow-slowing waterbutts

how much horse power in a water wheel
how to get wood across water and how
these waterfalls were built.

iv.
memories of duckraces and
dens still here from years ago
an amazingly beautiful place
with random junkyards rotting houses
and a field that would be perfect
to camp in.
a round of biscuits and
the love of spring.

v.
where does that path go?
rocking feet and
the sleeve of doom.
and what left
those trails in the mud?

how about another biscuit
and how long before the first ride
and why pipe dreams?

and why
is that thank you
upside down?

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