Christine Michael

Christine lives in Warwickshire and is the rep for the Poetry Society’s Stratford-upon-Avon Stanza group. She started writing poetry (for the first time since school) in 2010.

New Year’s Day

Noon. The sun is sharp and cool as a sniper.
 
Ploughed fields are ridges of bitter chocolate,
puddles glazed with broken ice-panes,
molehills detonated on green verges.
 
Our steps startle sparrows from a hedge
thick with rosehips; they fly up in arpeggio,
circle and subside a few yards off.
 
But the distant thump of a shotgun
echoing from beyond the woods
does not disturb the cropping horse
 
or interrupt the blackbird’s prosecution
of a snail in its merciless assizes.
 
Clear sky. The sun keeps us in its sights.
 
A troop of crows deploys from its high bivouac
to skirmish in bare stubble;
ewes huddle round fodder in a frosted meadow.
 
This is a day to read signs in naked branches,
to piece together torn-up scraps of birdsong,
divine direction from a dropped feather;
 
This is the rutted route we walk afresh,
as the sun surrenders its arms to dusk.
 

Christine Michael

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