on the slow train

(a few lines written on the slow train from Exeter to Waterloo last year, it was early autumn or late summer, after visiting Jay and Tina.  Just came across them in my diary. I had a little collection of rock garden plants which I bought when we visited Rosemoor, the NHS garden in Devon,   carefully placed on the overhead luggage rack and when I got off the train I left them there. I followed the lost property procedure without any luck. They probably just got thrown away.                          now I see that it was in July)

dull, ripe green

is it “grief”, that clenching ache in  my stomach when I wake up in the night?

“the next station is Salisbury”

there were friendly crowds in my dreams; they soon left

is the spire diminished?                  a weight of flesh on my eyes          knee clench exercise

cataracts of dull, ripe green press in a film over all these counties, Devon, Somerset,  Somerset, Wiltshire                    some openings of colour in the railway margins, stirred by the busy diesel – bright lathyrus, folded evening primrose

“at seat trolley service”

a mob of one

10 x twice or three times a day, and you wonder what was wrong with ‘thrice’

if a trice could live on

“the next station is Andover”

10 x 2 this physiotherapy, these verbal exercises, testing the emptiness, looking for shapes in the darkness

young pines between the tracks at Andover enjoying the poverty

wild carrot, loves chalk rubble – marginal consolations

hoping the ferment will begin again

the uncomfortable purity of the margins forbids nettles  (they like an easy bed, tickled by phosphates)        here they are though, by the wood. And neglected pasture taken over by  a sprawl of rosebay willow herb.

If it’s rare, you haven’t seen it

And beyond Basingstoke, the trees have given up trying to speak         and the houses, more and more, more and more houses in dumb crowds, without the articulation of streets

even at Woking, barracks and batteries of magnolia-fresh flats near the station

 

 

 

 

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