I’m a City Girl, I Don’t Like Nature

By Liane McKay

What is it that
constantly
draws me down to this flat, boring, empty field?
I’m a city girl! I don’t like nature!
But this place has won me over
and I’ve only known it in winter,
when everything’s wet and dour and the sun’s too stubborn to come up.

Princess, Pearl, Precious and other pals
whose ear tags I can’t make out
I’m happy to share your chilly field for a wee minute.
You’re not like the city girls in Pollok Park
with their gorgeous curly hair.
You’re sweaty, frizzy, coarse. Country coos.
I tug the knots out of my own hair, damp at the back of my neck.

One of you comes over.
‘Hello! What’s your name?’ I can’t help it.
A smile grows on my face.
Your hooves, slopping in the mud, follow your nose up to meet my hand
blade of grass extended.
My heart swells and I expand to fill the valley.

We’re interrupted by a chorus of qualks from the birds in Vs above.
They look like they’re frozen, hanging in the sky,
locked down, up there. But they push forward over the hills.
My neck craning, heart sinking, I ask you
‘When will we get to go away like they can?’
You turn your head as if you could look up, but choose not to.
A flash of yellow in your pierced ear and I grin.

Patience.

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Steph Newham
Guest
9 days ago

I really enjoyed this, made me smile, and loved the line ‘when everything’s wet and dour and the sun’s too stubborn to come up’ this line encapsulates Covid for me. Lots of vivid imagery and word choice. I felt this poem let me in, so many keep me out. Lovely.

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