Kiftsgate Court

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From the brow
Of the wooded escarpment
Eyes are drawn
To the picture
In a vista’s reach
Into mists and the rolling plain.
And then a near rose
Beckons come close
To the petal’s crenellations
And breathes as sweetly
As the lover’s kiss,
Competes with all the faded distance
And offers the planted bed
Afire with flowers
And boughs drooping
Under the weight.
And then again the call
From between scots pine:
The wood
Creeping down the vale,
Hauling the mind away
To thoughts afar and blurring.

© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2016

Village

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Nestled in the deep pocket
Of the Cotswolds
Lies a village
That can only be known
Via old tracks, footpaths
And bridleways.

Some say it was lost,
Loosing its footing in time.
And some say it is found
Disregarding time’s
Bustling runaway.

But all who walk
The sleepy streets
Are touched by the woodsmoke air
And the cottage gardens’
Homely claim

On old walls
In which the roses scramble
And flowers beds billowing rich
Beside the flagstone path.
And time appears

To flow unending
From pastoral histories
And more simple years
Where one year spent
Yielded freely
In the spending of the next.

© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2016

Metamorphosis

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I walk in to the garden
A man
In clothing and footsteps
And thought

And then as the banks
Of perennial leaf
Touch my check,
Reach to meet

My enquiring hand,
And as my eye,
Like foraging bee
Dips and inspects,

And my ears,
Drawn to perceive
The wood pigeons
Breathing symphonies.

And as my nose
Catches strands
Of scent upon the breeze,
I change

From the modern, disinterested man
To the lover
Of my brother the leaf
And my friends

The birds and insects,
Quick-winged under foliage
And shadow
And proud to own the branch

And scrump the flower heads.
And thus I become
The green thing,
Half man, half herb,

Wishing for the heady scents
Of earthen loam
And soil must
And coolness of the mother,

Where the flesh of my heart
Might be lain in a hollow
To absorb the deep nutrient
And feel the root of forever.

© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2016

We Were Kids

We set out as kids
On summer days,
Rummaging through
The undergrowth
Beneath sycamore and elder,
With mists of cow parsley
In the balance of our eyes
And swathes neck deep
On every side.
We were explores
Cutting the pungent stems
With machetes made from sticks
And the magic designed
In childhood minds,
Mapping uncharted banks
And the untended nooks
Behind garages,
Where cut grass
Disgorged from the garden’s arse
Sweated in heaps,
And old bikes
Were colonised
By wild grass
That rustled as we pushed by
On days that ranged so broad
We couldn’t perceive their endings.

© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2016

Blackbird

A blackbird hidden
Among the high branches
Whittles a song
With the tool
Of its tongue
And sculpts
The undisciplined air
To the fine art
Of a tune,
Whistled and warbled
And finally returned
By the breath
Conveying the voice,
Beautifully transformed.

© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2016

Butterfly Love

Around the white lilac bloom
Two white butterflies flirt
In spiral mirror images,
As if they were once
The petals on which
They now alight,
Revisiting for but the briefest instant
Of memory past
Before once again
Gambolling on updrafts
And the gentlest touches
Of wingtip flutterings
In the dance of butterfly love.

© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2016

Mood Of Flowers

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A mood of flowers
Blooms upon the village
As if an agreement
Had been drafted
Between last years seeds
And every verge
Offering to couch botanic.
And ever crevice
Containing a crumb of soil
Or even a puff of dust
Lends its dampness
To root indulgence florid,
Borrowing mid-day heat
Radiated from old stone walls.

And the gardens?
Well, they have burst their borders
And splurged to soften
The corners of the village
With lilac drifts
And wisteria trained to show
The fullness of a May day.
And iris tongues
Loll and flounce
And poppies are prominent
Atop the walls,
And all the other
Bells and beauties
Claim the air with scent
And the space
With perennial buttresses
Of stalks and spikes
And overarching species,
Daubing brickwork
With exuberant flourishes
Like the flair of the artist’s mood.

© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2016

Delicious Light

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O what solar incandescence,
Warm upon the face,
For us to freely take
From source
Diurnal everlasting.
And O what sustenance
In which we bathe
And garner flesh,
So we might glide
Upon the motive wing
High above it all,
Absorbing precious gift
In updrafts,
Light as breath
Of daffodil glowing
In yellow flush expressed.

© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2016