Barney and Emily run, shrieking through the woodland.
Plimsoled feet through the dry, leafy floor.
Carol sits with her Sony Walkman under the tree
with the initials and dates carved into its stretched sides.
Hugo talks maths puzzles with the two Dads
whilst the two Mums unload the picnic spread onto the blankets.

Thirty years later,
Emily stands in the quiet woods.
The ‘date’ tree still stands
but thirty years bigger.
The scarring of 1957 is,
a canyon in the bark now.
Emily traces the pronounced outline,
of other people’s markings
and hunts for her own.
Clearly her thirteen year old hand
was not firm enough with her knife,
And thirty years growth has heeled
her childhood scratches.

Emily turnes and returns to where,
her husband of two years
has spread out before them,
A feast to enjoy in the woods.

Written at The Lion’s Mouth, Felbrigg, North Norfolk, 26 May 2017, 1.45pm.

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