Tuesday, 13 June 2017

the open gate

[edited version]

I pass an open gate,
An unaccustomed window in high fencing.
Two men, mug in hand,
Look up the bank at
Heaps of earth, a barrow,
Spades.

One, the boss,
Downs his drink,
Nods and says,
No use standing around.

How often did I see men
Do similar in my childhood?
See my dad, or Doug
The builder.
Or Reuben or Norman
On the farm.

I see the same elsewhere in Oxford,
In Bampton. We've seen it
On holiday, even when we've not
Known the language.
A universal moment
On a summer morning.

Timeless, trivially-essentially
Human.

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