Hawthorn at Martinmas by Gillian Mellor

I am not a silent poet

The leaves are gone and the birds will come.
to pick at your splayed limbs
clotted red with the fruit of existence.
This is a season of remembrance.

You were laid down in lines to enclose the land,
found belonging in displacement –
you who have always remedied the heart’s failings.
A mother will always have her son home,

his actions always twisted to fit the fight
for a church, a history, a border, a dream.
This is how they harvest young men
with no land to call their own.

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