Rowan Tree

Three boulders of granite
step over the stream
where the steep path hairpins
at the head of the combe.

Islanded here, splendid
in all its full-berried vermilion,
filtering sun through eager green,
glowed the rowan tree,
magic and exigent
as when for True Thomas
it marked the choice of ways.

I kept still, filled my eyes,
listened to water
and for red deer,
waited to be told. What?

When the bright ordeal burnt out
I munched cold bun and cheese.
Later in London another rowan
shone among drab donkey brown
of terraces and pavement slabs
recently rinsed by rain.
Clearer with second sight.

Dinah Livingstone

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Dinah Livingstone Poetry