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Tim Youngs

Summer evening

An hour before this late August sunset
we sit out with a beer each and our books:
Wendell Berry’s The Peace of Wild Things
for me; my son has Das Kapital.

My son wears my blue jumper. It was closer.
I wear his green one because he took mine.
The solitary church bell’s just audible,
monotonous underneath tyre-noise

and gear-changes as vehicles process
up the hill by the meadow, and when
there’s a break in that traffic the bell
gives way to wood pigeons calling.

The blue jumper’s thin; the green’s cable knit.
When I catch my son shivering he grins.


At rest in the village

Breakfasting late on the patio of this cottage,
a sixteenth-century merchant’s house next to the church,
I read Wendell Berry drawing comfort from Nature,
from losing his worldly and personal worries
in quiet contemplation of things that do not worry,

and I find some comfort in that. Revivified,
I consider the buddleia, the butterflies light in their touch,
the wildflower meadow the other side of this wall,
the traffic routed around it, the wood pigeon
I’ll see in flight later, the wood burner’s ashes,

the stepped crack in the bricks where ivy
and buddleia meet, the red admiral now at rest
on the plant for a moment, wings down, and I
forget the crushing monetisation of everything,
the money that has bought us respite for a week.


Copyright © Tim Youngs, 2019