I muddled my way through
the puzzle with no clue.
I woke in the midst of a maze,
a mist seeped in and grew.
Still somehow the right turn I knew.
When I was a child, they said, go and play,
so it was unbelievably easy then.
You can remember but you cannot go back again.
The heron seemed wise,
his long, thin legs like bendable stilts,
he stood on a slimy, wet rock in the reeds,
near the lap of water,
his eyes set on the rush of a river,
his only wish to catch the dart of a fish.
And when he wanted away,
he had wings to fly in the sky.
A simple life he led,
it got to my head.
However, I thought it absurd
to envy a bird,
and certainly the heron
would not want to be human.
Aeroplanes parked in the air port,
their heads seemed to droop
like old men in need of a rest
and a bowl of hot soup.
So beaten and sad,
I wondered if they
still had the power
to lift and fly away.
With my ticket and passport,
I made it on board.
A first time flyer,
sat in my seat, away I flew.
Somehow, once again, I had muddled through.
Add number to number,
subtract and divide,
unequal to equations,
my intelligence died.
Felt more at home with pictures and words.
Outside the classroom window,
I could always study the birds.
Pebbles and shells you found on the shore,
an old gun fort left behind by the war.
Beware the bogey man who lives in the ditch.
In his shabby black coat,
to him each snag has a hitch.
Now you know the woman you fled from
till you had a stitch,
may have been strange in her white cottage
but she wasn’t a witch.
When did you ever do what you said?
Was’nt it something made up in your head?
I was a defender, played in defence,
left back in our football team.
We won the junior cup and league,
fulfilled our teacher’s dream.
To the opposing attacker,
I used my elbow and boot as a fence.
February frost on my back garden lawn
reminds me that winter still blows his cold horn.
Whithersoever you go, whatever winds blow,
may you find that summer garden
where sunflowers grow.