I want to go home
and find the past still waiting.
I want to watch the red ants
running over my favourite marble slab
in the path.
I want to help the caterpillars crawl
up the steep side of the corrugated iron garage
to hide away.
I want to lift a butterfly who is drunk with nectar
from a buddleia flower
and hold it high on the end of my finger.
I want to hear the thump of my rabbit’s back legs
as he scuttles to the secret part of his hutch
when I come to clean him out.
I want to feed my pet throstle.
I want to stroke my dog.
I want to smell the soft air
from the washhouse
on a Monday morning
and see the steam rise above the door.
I want to the hear the sound
of a transistor radio bleating out
from the lid of the water butt
in the pouring rain.
I want to hear the sound of my granddad
chopping wood for the fire
and run to him.
I want to eat fresh raspberries
straight from the canes
when I should be taking them in to my gran.
I want to prick myself picking gooseberries.
I want to shell some peas.
I want to sit at the back kitchen table
with my best marbles
and tell their stories.
I want to play with the fringe
of the green damask tablecloth.
I want to wear my blue dress
with the rows of tiny daisies on it
and a big bow at the back.
I want to read Swallows and Amazons again
for the very first time.
I want to sit on my swing
with a bar of chocolate
and sing to the May blossom
across the road.
I want to feel bored on a Sunday afternoon
that seems to last forever.
I want my mum to brush my hair.
I want to feel safe.
I want to go home.
This poem was published in the Spring 2015 edition of Northern Life magazine.