Submission #15 Miranda White

Feet

I first emerged into the moors and woodland.

It is there that I found words and uses for my limbs, among rolling hills and patchwork fields,

Lush, beneath a somewhat dingy grey.

My feet grow. They tread further.

Soaking, they stand beneath turbulent skies, waves crashing against rocky shorelines.

Cobbled streets become familiar beneath their soles.

Drenched socks cling and chafe.

Forlornly, footsteps retreat back.

Back to hedgerows of buzzing and darting

Occasional rays of bright, dazzling sun over bucolic horizons.

But feet must walk.

Into the cold they go, losing themselves beneath heavy snow falls.

Gliding across ice that has never felt the warmth of the sun’s rays.

They tingle back to life in front of crackling fires each evening,

Only to be numbed again when twilight dawns.

Frost-bitten but alive, footsteps retreat back.

Back to pinked skies as night descends,

Rocky outcrops littered with the leaves of autumn, blustering in the wind.

But feet must walk.

Scorched land turned to dust, oranges their soles.

Far beneath, water flows shyly.

It’s secret only revealed by the hummingbird and spider.

Sand gives too easily beneath each footfall.

Tracking waterways, they trail into a sticky heat,

To the scent of thick, damp life.

Mud parts uneasily between toes and lingers longer.

Spattered and scarred, footsteps retreat back.

Back to bubbling brooks dashing through shaded forests,

Wild garlic permeating the fresh, spring air.

But feet must walk.

Hot tarmac sizzles under noisy, choked skies

Howls and hoots torment, confusing direction.

Roots miss the earth, even as they tread along ancient stonework.

Released, footsteps retreat back.

Back to lazy rivers passing through tired hillsides.

Grazing sheep and walls that hold themselves.

But feet must walk.

And now they stand, chilled, between snow-topped goliaths.

Awed and delighted to challenge them,

Ripped free and embracing the sky.

But when they tire, the grassy stretches of Yorkshire will beckon,

And footsteps will retreat back.

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