Monday, 17 August 2015

In Berrylands

It's the top tip of a white-shirted geezer
leaving the pub that leads us from the meagre

harvest of a roadside trellis overhang
to richer pickings along the lane behind

the sun- and family-packed beer garden. By now
we've worked out a system of sorts: while you

nab the lower stuff with admirable speed (your
fingers wresting plump ones beneath each stinger),

I lean up with a practised tiptoe balance
(not so clever if I fall in the nettles)

to reap the bigguns 'within a tall man's reach'.
So many turn to mush at the merest touch

one more storm will surely fetch them off. We share
how we first went berrying: me at Ranmore

Common with my folks, my brothers and buckets;
you in shiny Sheffield with your nannan. It's

marvellous how quickly we fill to the brim
the ice-cream container. I hum, as you sing.

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