The road folds along green cork screw hills
to forest eyebrows of trees.
Golden light, and soft pastures
imaginings of Provence.
Weekend punishment counters
weekday sedentary comfort.
Salt sweat mascara cries down
a foundation layer of dust.
One last climb
long and slow
fast descent to the plains
enjoy wind rushed hair, then flat to home.
Late summer, early autumn
red, juicy and inexpensive.
A bag of memories from a perfect day.
Time is good
a man emerges from the shadow of behind
to the light of the counter.
A question how far have I pedalled.
We talk, a range of topics
young and unaware
when conversation faints
he administers the oxygen of question.
The sun slides behind hills.
Afternoon is fading I must go – he reluctant
money is waved away.
Later the clues are deciphered
longer than ache
less than grief
he seeks the unknowing comfort of company.
Many years later I returned
the orchard is gone
the trees lifted
scattered fields where fruit once fell.
An old church occupies a corner
serving coffee not a congregation – theology retires to commerce.
Sacred memories polyurethaned in wooden floors
light pauses through respectful windows
tumbling onto happy tables
warm and sombre
echoes and music. The afterlife.
For the back story click Backstage
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