September, Black Hill

(from the Tributaries Commission, Holmfirth Arts Festival 2012)

Light-silvered bracken swathe
dips Reap Hill slopes, lower slopes
where the light takes, where the light
falls over late morning           this time of
year, starting to see land’s skeleton
again               green falls away, dries
each grass as it lowers, lies, seeding
summer-end light first touch of earth 
of paper faint bone trace all down in
some parallel of eye                up to a
single high rowan horizon waving
bracken ridge, not a line, not a single
line, closer they move against each
other, against sky, changing mid-light
no colour high silhouetted above us
as wind takes the ridge        and sweeps
down to heather green-purple, cloughs
sounding rocks, sounding land, one to
each side, in each open ear       closed
red blood-casing, heard or felt, not seen
little marks turning corners, making
corners               crevices where under
ledge moss, flat ferns are, darkwet
warmth grows them, light fall rain over
them drawn over, drawn over, not lines
just growing, growing over each other –
in the noise of it all, everything looks like


Harriet Tarlo