The oak tree

A misshapen old man

that barred our way to school.

We would sidle past, caps over our eyes,

the aged oak in Greenfield Avenue,

so wide the path went round it;

startling, lurid growths

broke away from its crevices,

crumbling at a touch.


Aware of beauty, we gathered

cobwebs, glistening with dew

and sunlight, netting them as gleaming fish

in rock pools, with bent twigs.

In those days we still saw hedgehogs,

they weren’t unusual, bumbling along

in front of our footsteps,

or curled up, defying calamity. 



◄ The donkeys of Mijas

York station ►


<Deleted User> (21854)

Sun 28th Apr 2019 11:53

I love reading your poems about memories as when I read them I feel the emotions as if I was there.

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Greg Freeman

Tue 6th Feb 2018 21:55

Too many other commitments, Graham! But thanks.

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Graham Sherwood

Thu 18th Jan 2018 17:41

Brought that play Ptang Yang kipperbang to my mind (only in that it was a spider).

You should write more Greg!

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Greg Freeman

Thu 18th Jan 2018 17:19

Thanks for giving this one a look-over, Ray. I wrote it a few years ago at a poetry workshop at Surbiton library run by Alison Hill. I attended the workshop partly for sentimental reasons - I used to frequent the library as a sixth-former many years before, bunking off school to read poetry instead. Gary Snyder was one of my favourites at that time.

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Wed 17th Jan 2018 14:13

I love the way you express the curiosity of children and how fertile that can be. The juxtaposition of hedgehogs seems perfect if not proveable. Do we ever grow up, that is the question, whether 'tis nobler to be old... I have to say it's not bad at all. More please Greg.


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