Visiting Rights

In the long green womb
of over-wintered broad beans,
seeds begin to swell.

Cow parsley fringes
the lane beside the station
where I catch the train.

Walking along routes
we used to take together
feels quite normal now.

You have almost left,
though your body still lies here,
in a bed with rails.

We couldn’t keep up
with the pace you set, climbing
your favourite mountain.

Now, each shallow breath
slips over the precipice
that is your ribcage.

Skin sags from your bones,
unplumped by flesh or muscle,
busy hands wasted.

You are almost there,
scaling the final incline;
arrive triumphant.

I play you music
with trumpets in A major,
to greet your entrance.

I will sow speedwell
into the lining of your coat
for a safe journey.

 

Hannah Stone has been widely anthologized and published on ezines and in The North, Dreamcatcher and other journals and collaborations. Solo publications include ‘Lodestone’ (Stairwell Books, York, 2016) and ‘Missing Miles’ (Indigo Dreams 2017). She collaborates with poets, composers and broadcasters. In other lives, she is a hillwalker, forager, singer and teacher.