Only slightly lost, we find the paper

Folded in an inside pocket. We are there,

Somewhere, one to twenty-five thousand,

A mote of mobile imagining.


And a trickle of blue splits the landscape.


In the orange skein

We untangle a rolling surface pressed

Flat on the map, but filled with pebble,

Outcrop, blades of grass.

On close scrutiny of the stylised code

A shrubby plantation catches the eye

With its little lollipop trees

Springing from the rough green hummocks

Of a rough green pasture.


And a trickle of blue splits the paper.


On the ground

We find no deep black names.

No red carpets are laid on our tracks.

Hidden from the ink are the implicit sheep,

The thin, abstracted cry of a curlew’s mate,

The wide airy volume of the space

The loneliness

The unprintable emptiness of being there


Second prize winner Jersey Evening Post Poetry Competition 1999

Published in Take Flight, A Poetry Collection (2020)