11. Poem

From a Desk, Unchained

Eight square feet of polished pine,
Thick as the wrist that smooths it,
Set gentle-edged on rustic legs
This score of years, unshakeable.

Calm of pale green painted walls,
Picture-board clippings: sheep, a hare,
A multi-layered poem and the felt bird
My son sewed for me.

Behind my left shoulder
The window breathes birdsong.
A dove chants, children confer,
A pheasant squawks sometimes.

This corner is an anchorage,
Place of labour, place of rest.
Surprisingly, its confines
Set me free.

Maps, graphs and data
Scrutinised on screen,
Bear me across Yorkshire
In process and place.

Reflections and happenings
Poured onto the page.
I travel with the post
To those I love.

Pondering, the chunk of branch
Pruned from our apple tree
Years ago, fits in my clasp

Released, the small knock of
Wood on wood.
I write again, or read:
Landscapes open wide.

Pamela White


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