Taking the Old Path

A walk in another direction


The ancient willows are alive with leaf again.

They’re a fine example of nature’s miracles.

Trunks hollowed out by age and decay playing

host to lesser plants clinging to their crannies.

Their weathered core sunlit into abstract paintings.


Behind them the bird cherry is in full candle.

Bidding them good morning we take our track

strolling beneath the pink flowered overhang

from the neighbour’s grand old almond tree.

A short walk and she’s bathing in lush dewy grass.


The fields spread out on our left overlooked by

the small plantation of mature oak and walnut.

On our right the river is rippled by a breeze today.

A cormorant, or maybe a shag, is fishing, diving

out of sight then surfacing every twenty metres.


After a few dives it moves on with a slow splashy

take off leaving in low pterodactyl like flight.

Beneath willow fronds a grebe calls for its mate.

We continue on the uneven surface sandwiched

between the head-high stands of last year’s reeds.


A gap flattened by wind allows a view across the river

to water meadows vivid green with spring growth.

Our route follows the bank raised above the fields

until the way narrows on the edge of woodland.

We continue until the river turns away in a wide arc.


I stop, hoping to catch a glimpse of the stag and hinds,

but today they graze elsewhere. A mallard and his hen

sit on branches of a drowned tree preening, uncaring

of a voyeur and his companion. We’ve walked far enough.

We must turn around and return on the familiar old path.






























© Guaj 2023
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very vivid descriptions, G. felt that i was there walking the path replete with its rich array of life going about its business on all sides. wonderful poem.


G, the edits make this better, but I was going to suggest that some of the sentences could be collapsed, for example:

The ancient willows are alive with leaf again,
A fine example of nature’s miracles.
Trunks hollowed out by age and decay play
Host to feeding plants clinging to the crannies,
With weathered cores sunlit into abstract paintings.


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