Whenever I can, I visit the lake district with friends. There is a house there where someone dear to me would always go with their family.
It is small and built of slate. It has no heating, no phones, no cd player and definitely no internet. The house has a rich library of four records: ‘The Best of Boney M’, Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Dreams’, The Beatles’ ‘Sgt. Pepper’ and ‘The best of Simon and Garfunkel’. The house sits beneath massive ridges and green, green fields and hosts a consortium of sheep in its garden. The front door is red.
Like this poem, the house is called Ash Lea.
Plummy, thickset heather
growing close by Slater’s bridge,
and easy into water
where you would swim
when you were growing too.
Smells of history
round a swampy mere
where purple plants torn up by children’s
were carried back
like precious treasures
to Ash Lea.
jammed with clumsy concentration
in to dusty jars
like scented English feathers
to sit, lake-ish offerings
on your family’s kitchen table.
to be jealous of a flower.