Going back to Branscombe

J.S. Watts

I come back through the winding lane of memory.
Recollection has no straight lines, only
the curves and undulations
of summer slopes and buttercup meadows
where the rising brook twists and hides
under sun-warm stone and daisy grass,
eager to reach the waiting pebbled beach
and the fresh waves’ teasing kisses.
A toy boat sails black and white bravely
down the stream, into the dark of the overhang,
away from tears and desperate childish hands,
towards a tempting sea.

Later may bring consolation of thatched roof tea,
sticky July sweetness of scones and strawberry jam,
in a tea room I assume has gone, but may
just still be here or grown into something new,
as is the way of dreams;
things appearing and reappearing,
like the little black and white boat lost to the stream
bobbing up again from the summer shadows
further down the field-lined valley
as the water re-emerges from the soil, still hungry
for the waves’ promised kisses
under the sky-blue umbrella of returning grown-past days.

Branscombe is a picturesque Devon vilage of thatched houses. It also contains a mill and forge restored by the National Trust.

There are plenty of poems from Devon in the Poetry Atlas.

This poem is from the collection by J.S. Watts, Years ago you coloured me.

Main Location:

Branscombe, Devon

View of Branscombe in Devon, England

Image by Phillip Capper, licensed under Creative Commons.