Photograph in my Wallet

Photograph in my Wallet


I heard rural life described
as a comfort on the radio.
Epidemics or not, the land

reclothes, smiles sappily again,
but if anything reminds me
that we are not of the land

it is this photograph of two
girls staring at the Shinnel,
moving to stand on tippytoe

to peer over the parapet
of the weather beaten bridge.
So I know it is

a melancholy time
when the trees are bare
of leaves and the wind flows

through the rattling world
of what’s left, and I know
rivers still move towards

the sea, clouds stream
like flags but unmistakably
something has gone,

like innocence or more,
a rare time of kindness
that won’t return.