Getting back to normal
In this blessed silence I can hear
the sounds of life.
There is space to feel,
to see the moon.
After the winter winds that ripped through me
comes this stillness
The people who pass me speak of caring, of fear and of grief,
where I’ve grown used to hearing them speak of resentment,
of frustration and of glorious plans.
Now once again I hear
the very ordinary grief,
the wailing I remember,
for another all too short life remembered,
in the face of forces beyond their control.
People, who have changed so much around them,
suddenly speak of change, of healing
So much is slower – more slow,
and flow-er – more flow.
I’ve learned to count out each five days without play
before the children return;
now each day flows the same in its natural way,
governed by the weather.
I’ve seen ten generations come and go,
love and leave.
I’ve heard less and less as the noises have grown,
the coming of the railway, the motor car, the aeroplane.
But suddenly things are as I remember
from when I was small and bent in the wind,
those memories I’d come to doubt as imaginings.
People walk, and talk, children and adults together.
The air is sweet on my buds,
carrying news of my fellow flowers and animals.
Released from the endless crescendo that I once heard called progress,
I feel the circle of days,
and of years,
and of lifetimes
Things are getting back to normal.
Bill Roberts, April 2020