and fresh-smelling cloth out of the basket,
and more often than not seeing the air stirring things to life.A breezy day is best, as the sheets and shirts belly out
like great galleons setting sail
for goodness knows where.
Today the laundry is not cracking whip-like in the wind,
or dancing loose from the pegs in a bid for free flight.
The air is still
after the early thick frost,
and the bird bath still sits frozen at it's centre
despite being touched by the sharp, bright, sunlight.
Everywhere is wrapped in a deep quiet.
The children of the neighbourhood are all at school so
only the occasional burst of bird song,
and the constant crooning of the wood pigeons seeps into the quiet.
Listening, I am transported back to another
garden of my childhood.
While I remain busy with the chore at hand,
I am somewhere else;
and for that fraction of time
I can almost smell the great yew tree
that shadowed one corner of the garden,
hosting the wood pigeons all those years ago.
I remember the washing I've seen
set out to dry over bushes and shrubs in lands where
the sun could be relied upon,
and the season of the winds is occasional and anicipated.
I remember those lands which are torn apart
by so many disasters of war, and poverty,
and by the very flaws of the planet we all share.
Is it any wonder that the quiet of my garden,
and the ordinariness of things made new again,
lifts my heart in thanksgiving for what I have, and have known,
as well as in a silent cry that others may know this same ordinary joy.
Pen and ink sketch I did some long time ago
I return to my warm kitchen, leaving my prayer flags fluttering
and for all who suffer today.