Mabry mill with fall foliage along the Blue Ridge Parkway in Virgina.


The Old Mill at the bend,
Where, every now and then,
The Mill pond is called back
By the water pouring itself
Into a great flood,
Covering the old road,
Filling the sunken garden,
Drowning the lanes
In witch soaked water,
So that no-one can come or go.
No-one disturb the ghosts
Of all the women drowned
As witches.

We don’t want them
Floating on top of the water.
Their dying eyes remembering,
Their mouths wide open with curses
To fall on those murdering men.

Witch hunters
Want those words laid upon them swept away.
Want the drenching fear of the dark spells lifted.
The women drowned all over again.

They should be so lucky.

The one with hair red as sunset,
White boned with wispy fingers,
Red heart bright with living fire,
Who has waited out the centuries
To claim her righteous vengeance,
Will take back every last curl
Torn from her dying head by jealous women,
Working hand in hand with murderous men.

Take heed, then.
Killers take care.
Remember the wronged dead,
Still lying amongst the dark weeds,
Still floating and drifting
Down and along the old Mill pond.

They do not forget
But wait by the Mill at the bend.
Their dead tongues clacking,
Their heavy shadows bending life and death
To their implacable will.

                   ©2020 Gwen Grant


falling stars

When I was a girl, I was sent away to Kent, to a kind of hospital
school to make me better.  I was only there a year yet that year has given
me memories for a lifetime, good and bad.  The Kentish woods helped me
settle because they formed a link to my much loved woods of home. 


I walked the spine of morning
Whilst the birds slept.
Their little feathered bodies
Absorbing the melody of leaves,
The quiet breathing of grass,
Waking to the delicate sounds of light changing,
Their tiny anthems gathering strength
Enough to fill the woods with song.
Drowning these cool Kentish pathways
With joy and praise.

Where, last night, a falling star
Tumbled through the trembling leaves
Shoring up this world’s quiet beauty.

I saw it fall.
The little wren and the robin at my shoulder,
The nightingale singing into the morning light.
Our eyes clinging to the long radiance
Of Jupiter and Mars shining briefly
Onto that star ridden path.

Setting that quiet Kentish wood ablaze
With the glory of falling stars,
Of little birds singing.

                                 © 2020 Gwen Grant


cezanne fruit


There’s no more, is there.
It’s all gone.
The love that was meant
To last a lifetime
Has somehow trickled away.

There’s no help for it,
No healing.
Memory is hopeless,
Desire, useless,
Even though that beauty
You once saw,
You suddenly see again.

It’s too late.
You know it’s touch at fault,
That tingle on the skin
Is missing
And nothing can replace it.
Nothing fill that particular emptiness.

Best look to the sun, then.
Start all over again.
Because love tells us
With absolute certainty,
It’s not going to be dark
For ever.

         ©2020 Gwen Grant.