25 May – Old haunts

High on Ilkley Moor with no hat and no cares,
feet finding familiar falls on tourist thoroughfares,
I retrace the path patterns that taught me so much,
widening my heart to a broader, wilder love.
This is where I first found home among windswept heather
and lost my breath to freedom in fierce, fabled weather.

I descend to the Wharfe with eager, strong strides,
remembering countless times when I walked beside
its rushing, raw strength and across its stepping stones –
the first time I spotted a kingfisher on my own.
This is where I first breathed wild garlic’s perfume
and marvelled at its carpeting bright stars in bloom.

I steal briefly on to Beanlands, then cross to Middleton Woods,
the queen of bluebell-homes for miles and miles of neighbourhoods.
I lose myself in wandering on wayward, weaving tracks,
enjoying the poignant sensation of this special coming back.
I drive on to Burley to have coffee and cake with old friends,
remembering even when you move, connection to place never ends.

25 May - Old haunts