A poem for Paul Brookes heatwave inspired collection. Send them in!
The yellow stuff in the photo isn’t wheat, it’s what the long grass behind the house has become. The wilted sapling is a poplar.
Cool beneath the shade trees,
and the birds still sing.
A squirrel leaps from branch to branch,
tree to tree.
But the sun has risen in fury,
eating the blue, spitting out flames.
No thunderbolts fall
among the limp oak leaves
only the shrivelling eye of the sun.
Soon there will be silence
except for the hiss and patter of sprinklers,
sucking the life of the stream, the river.
He will be dead soon,
the old man who robs the tree roots,
his tomatoes, leeks, his sheep eaten.
And the oaks bow, shrink,
their dry leaves whispering,
we too will follow. Soon.