I've been driving
through a tunnel of beech,
watching flumes of soaked shells sail the ditches,
do you see them?
Windows down, cold creaking in the knuckles,
feeling subdued, purposeless with plenty
to do, we pull into the holiday house.
I take to hopping over
fallen logs, call the collective to putting on walking boots and wandering.
I start collecting sweet chestnuts in pockets,
singing chords, not choruses, led as only my throat knows.
I begin burrowing
as if a squirrel, throwing them to the floor and stamping
to get inside spiked spheres,
stolen from harsh banks the greys avoid,
left otherwise to rotting.
I imagine gobbling them by a lit fire,
run to catch up with the tribe
of communal walkers, left behind, and again slow
to gather ground apples,
to plan a crumble,
heart sore with wonder and bounty.
Autumn has been for domancy,
cool air and restful minds -
in the mean time
find our gold where it's slowly sinking,
hide it in the layers of our thick ochre skirts,
join together, start a flame
with thanks for woods, nuts and fruits from the tree.