A Quarterly Journal
Jeffrey Woodward, Founder & Owner
Ray Rasmussen, General Editor

Volume 13, Number 3, September 2019

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Tim Gardiner
Manningtree, Essex, UK

The Sky, Taken Away From Us

I'd forgotten the landscape of The Fens, its large open fields with little tree cover, intersected by drainage ditches. It's a landscape of panoramic skies and straight roads, with few hills or woodland.

at first glance
its gothic towers
remind me
of Dracula's Castle
on a lonely hillock

I can't keep my eyes off the cathedral. The Ship of the Fens disappears from view on the bypass, only to materialise in the distance as I turn the corner of a remote lane and park on the verge. The footpath fingerpost points across a blackened wheat field, which once resounded with the songs of grasshoppers.

cloud shadows
on the old drove
come and go
like hailstones
in spring

The heavy shower moves away on a strong breeze. Several anvil clouds are stacked up on the horizon. The walk is necessarily short; I make it back to the car and turn on the radio, while the windscreen is hammered by rain.

wondering when
the storm will end
the melancholy
of a post-punk band
seems appropriate