Blue sky is fluffed with grated cloud,
whole sprinklings of it, glueing white
skyscape on a slab of lake
as geese erupt into communal flight.
Dispatched, the units hurtle, loud
as ship horns on a foggy sea,
survival for survival’s sake,
returning to the water, noiselessly.
Norland Moor, Calderdale, March 2013
Mintily air whitens
as clouds balloon over the broadness
of hills and mane-thick gorse,
like a wig encompassing the glassy, grassy
snows of Norland Moor
Blackly scribbles swim
in jagged elegance
like cackles grating
silences of sky:
crows of Norland Moor.
Above the Canal at Hebden Bridge
The canal, a pewter moonbeam ribboning the town, is silent:
a sleeping sheep, it radiates
a silvered calm, beaded by bobbing
boats of blue and bushy green.
The barges may as well be lily-pads,
the unobtrusive rectangle of water
one of many stitched into a twined bone-structure
rimming parks and pathways,
soft like settling snow – canals endure
seemingly unendingly and simple,
a stark reciprocity of gains,
un-squeezed harvest of persistent peace,
a long rain-coloured corridor
no longer used for coal or sacks of grain,
but resurrected from the slimiest demise
by holiday-and-home-makers, their boats
like tubes of childhood sweets
bobblingly slotted along waters
self-evidently tinselling a round, echoic course.
Shy relations of aggressive seas,
genteel cousins of the rivers,
unselfconscious and subdued, reassuringly straightforward:
in a world of continual uncertainties, canals are rare constants.
Heron, Rochdale Canal
At a distance on this Sunday afternoon,
you’re eyebrow-fine in river mist,
cut sharp and almost one-
as though your wafer-thinness
were a cloak,
a winter pelt,
or as when our insides
are x-rayed onto screens
or analysed through samples,
charts and graphs,
we see ourselves reduced to DNA,
our blood and bones
blackboarded in a squiggled jumble,
technologically transfigured, gridded,
a dot-to-dot re-focusing,
like some complicated, simple mathematical joke.
Perhaps this wraithlike sillhouette,
this flickered implication’s
how we look, framed
through avian eyes,
or when offering a thread,
our shadowed selves concealed,
in office, waiting room, field, or home,
when money, faith, or love’s set down
and bartered over.
Ours is a world of angles, shades,
and beyond them, other outlines tapering
to far horizons.
©2015 Simon Zonenblick
Simon Zonenblick is a poet living in the Ryburn Valley, Yorkshire. Simon works mainly in libraries and dabbles in gardening. Two collections of his poetry have been published: Little Creatures -poems of Insects, Small Mammals and Micro-organisms (Caterpillar Poetry) & Random Journeys (Unpretentious Arts).