The Withered Stump by Paul Brookes

wittle into greybeard or crone.
Fetter failed fields,
barren bairns, cracked
ploughs, sodden seeds,
aborted births and deaths
come too soon. Lay him or her
on a stoked fire. Make sure
all burns to ash,
to spread as a wish on soil.
Keep candles lit
all through darkness.
Tend to grow of brightness.

Paul Brookes was poetry performer with “Rats for Love” and his work included in “Rats for Love: The Book”, Bristol Broadsides, 1990. His first chapbook was “The Fabulous Invention Of Barnsley”, Dearne Community Arts, 1993. He has read his work on BBC Radio Bristol and had a creative writing workshop for sixth formers broadcast on BBC Radio Five Live.

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