Brambling

Mouths bloodied purple, fingers antennae
trembling for the touch of hidden fruit –

foragers scouring the hinterland,
eyes skinned for dark swell of berry.

Our days are long, and battle-scarred
with brambling. Brummels lade our nights;

all our tomorrows are a hooked tunnel
of bummelkites. We move hungrily

among edges, hunting for certainties:
scavengers off a darkened street,

hardened hierophants
in the sacred lore of blackberries.

We love beck-sides, and derelict places
where branches scramble out of sight –

behind nettles, under hawthorns, sidling
through bracken. We are long-armed

with reaching for the woody stems
that clamber at an immense height.

But most of all we love the brambles
arching spindly over walls in ginnels –

stray offerings from untidy ends of gardens,
bending with plump black weight.

Lucy Newlyn, from Ginnel