Creative Writing, Venue

Puddle Jumping

A month with no colour, no snow,

a thick puffer jacket pulled over

two red ears against a thudding Arctic bite;

the boy treads on, warm and shuffling 

up the garden path

happy simply for the freedom 

of the winds.

The world is his: he sees no fence

but the stretch of grass that coils out

giddy towards a blanching sky,

the world is his,

until a puddle stops his form,

a puddle of himself, colder, shoeless,

withered in a cup of grass.

The boy saw himself rippling,

wrinkled like a grandfather, just a head

swinging back and forth and pendulous, 

and they stare and stare back through

this corridor of ice. This boy, 

a silent fisherman, his head cast in 

the wrap of January air, stamps down

and breaks it, bursts 

the frost from his window

and spooks a group of magpie, each

jumping out from the ripples to 

shriek above, circling the silence

of the boy and his muddled face,

a silent fisherman, his head cast in.

11/02/2020

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Oliver Shrouder