Creosote, Grandad, Shed.


Mid seventies, mid summer

mid afternoon.

Heat blossoms amid ripening raspberries.

Flowers reach skyward.

Grass warm on feet.


Shed door wide open,

an ear listening for a breeze.

Rhythmic peaceful breathing

from the incumbent in a deckchair

Grandad’s working day is done.


Potatoes banked up, raspberries cordoned,

chickens fed and watered.

Dusty trilby loose in vacant hands.

Collarless shirt closed at the neck,

sleeves rolled like doughnuts, bony elbows.


Turn-up’s, ditches of a corduroy field

slope downwards to worn hobnail boots

not allowed in house, at home in the shed.

Eyes that have known so much,

shuttered down, ease on his wrinkled face.


Each time aged, dusty, warm creosote

brings me to this spot,

this time, this place.

Grandad asleep in the shed.

How little I knew I would revisit this place.


If he had woken

what would he have said

if I asked about his life?

Fifty years later, I still ask,

never to know the answer.

30 May 2021. 2:20 p.m. -2:35 p.m.

Fine, sunny day. 83% waning.

The smell of Creosote

©TMPearce 2021