Abandoned Lock Canals, they ran like veins across tree-hooded land, pumping hope, surging grit,
Marsh grass hides clamor of peepers singing spring. Salamanders scrape fleshy fins on glacial rock, sprinting
Trees reaching for blue, branches in promise
The butterflies have turned to metal, exoskeletons dulled,
Discomfort, creeping down my bones, across my dough punched hands. I am feeble, blocked by alien phrases, in recipes that should be written out by hand,
Concealed beneath its overhanging banks, A river flows, swift, sweet and true still rimmed with ice,
From a second storey window we would drop into freedom, unbound by catechism, custom or guilt.
This is an image from the British census, my grandmother’s name on the final line. Born in a Welsh coal mining village, by 1911 she’s a domestic servant in London, coming of age during the Edwardian Era made famous by Downton Abbey. This is who she really was.