Turned seventy, and not wanting
to waste the years left, half-asleep,
I’m stocking the shelves of a larder.
Each day is an empty jar to fill:
yesterday, with the silvery teeth
on a leaf-lichen; the day before,
with a thin mist rolling slowly
across the valley, fading a line
of beeches to pencilled ghosts.
Today it’s the powdery bloom
on the skin of a blueberry;
turning it, cold from the fridge,
between my thumb and finger;
noting the petal-shaped crater
where the flower shrivelled,
a small hole where it was pulled
from the stalk, crushing
its tangy pulp on my tongue.
About this poem
In 2015 the Scottish Poetry Library commissioned poets Douglas Dunn, Vicki Feaver and Diana Hendry to write on the theme of age. Their poems appear together in Second Wind as part of the Saltire Society’s pamphlet series. The project as a whole is supported by The Baring Foundation, as one of its series of ‘Late Style’ artist commissions.