Issue #8

Wild Game

Swing-leaper, bale-scaler, roof-walker.
Wheel-heeled she whoops down country lanes.
Born from a stubble scratch in a sea fret. She
is scabby as a boy.

A bad influence.
An egg thief.
Her raspberry stained fingers rip through the earth.
Ducks and chickens peck at her feet.
Rabbits skin themselves for her plate.

Feed and muck. Plant and pluck.

Rooted in garden and fields, she
sacrifices teeth and knees in play.
Combs her hair with hedgerows and dresses
in the burrs and mud of dens.

By day she rules the beasts and trees,
by night coal fires and lap-warmed cats.

She grows.

In time, the wild-eyed girl learns to hide.
Her family cleave and move to town, without
the goats and geese and gooseberries.

I fancy she is still there,
amongst the mushrooms and the treetops,
but no-one sees her anymore.
Twisted tails of brambles crowd out the sun -
no torch can pick her out.

That garden is wild now too.

Abigail Flint