From Spirit of Postman’s Park by Pat Mary Brown

Certain things we do perceive here, though dimly, as if through mists. Fountain waters rising, falling, turning again. Plane trees rooting down, reaching up. On the earth beneath, tiny plants, sharp yellow/green, a-trembling, a-dancing in spring air. Dying leaves drifting to cold stone. Soft enfoldment of winter snows…

But, we do not ‘see’ these things as you do. Rather, we receive them as energies – as ‘rising’, ‘falling’, ‘reaching’, ‘dancing’, ‘drifting’, ‘dying’, enfolding’. Energies moving through worlds.

It is true that when one of our names is called out loud, so then, the vibration of those words travels soulward, from your lips, through your dense atmospheres, to Here.

Your memories hang like little flags; they fly high on the breath of your words.

We can contract, draw ourselves in and down, scatter and become fragmented. Once more individual and seperate,

and then…..

and then…..

“I do remember the  frozen ice, cracked open. Blue lips. Hair streaming upside down – and beneath, weeds tangled to silence.”

“I do remember my eylashes hot, burning away, my skirt flaring into singed skin searing, the rising flames’ roar.”

“I do remember Tommy, my kid brother, calling, and I following. He always laughing, springing ahead through the dark, long tunnel to Here.”

and then…..

and then…..

with what, for your understanding, we must call a breath – a single, tiny, unifying breath – we expand, return…

Listen. Our vehicle, from where you are to Here, was love. This is what we now are. Love. You must discover this for yourselves, each one of you.

Long, long after water has seeped from torn lungs, and charred flesh is returned, in tiny fragments, to the soil, it is this that prevails. Granite clouds of grief dissolve. Loss  lessens, softened by the turning, turning wheel, season upon season – and this remains.

That is the long of it, and the short. The ins and outs, the nitty gritty, the thing of it. At the end of the days, and all of the nights – is love.

About claire collison

Writer, photographer, creative facilitator, and breast cancer survivor, I am currently Artist in Residence at the Women's Art Library (WAL) My first novel was a finalist in the Dundee Book Prize, and my short stories and poetry have appeared in print and online. In 2015 I was awarded second place in the inaugural Resurgence Prize, the world's first eco poetry competition, judged by Sir Andrew Motion, Alice Oswald, and Jo Shapcott. This blog began as a space for words generated on my walking/writing workshops at the Mary Ward centre in Bloomsbury - Writing the City (WTC). WTC has since grown to include many other venues, including the Museum of Broken Relationships, the Barbican, the River Rom, Southwark Woods, Aylesbury Estate, and most recently, as part of Walking Women festival, An Intimate Tour of Breasts. I have worked with Kettle's Yard, Cambridge, as the recipient of the first Max Reinhardt Literacy Award, designing teaching resources; and for The Photographers' Gallery, helping school children develop visual literacy as part of 'Seeing More Things'. If you would like me to design a workshop or walk for you, please be in touch!
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