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Wendy Pratt: four pantoums



The Boulders Dream


I


now it's to be moved and given its story back

not just a boulder

in the form of an iron plaque

but a Shap granite erratic boulder


not just a boulder

they’ve moved it to widen the road

Shap granite an erratic boulder

they’re moving everything to widen our world


they've moved it to widen the road

to build a bridge over the train track a bypass

they're moving everything to widen our world

a supermarket where the cattle market was


they're building a bridge over the train track a bypass

I am sitting in the bus stop smoking hash

there's a supermarket where the cattle market was

now it’s to be moved and given its story back




II


i watch the boulder moved for the new build

it is craned through the air in a sling it rolls and swings

then settles dumb and pink as meat

the ground around it is back filled


it is craned through the air in a sling it rolls and swings

i am sitting in the bus stop smoking hash

i am dumb and pink as meat

they're building a bridge a bypass


i am sitting in the bus stop smoking hash

i am riding to school on the bus

they're building a bridge a bypass

and a supermarket where the cattle market was


i am riding to school on the bus

i am being back filled

there is a supermarket where the cattle market was

i watch the boulder moved for the new build




III


I am with a boy. I am riding to school on the bus.

I am walking to school. I am driving a car. I am

running for a train. I am being touched.

I am walking with a man.


I am walking to school. I am driving a car. I am

running for a train.

I am walking with a man.

The boulder is at the bottom of a lake.


I am running for a train.

The boulder is in the garden of the station house.

The boulder is at the bottom of a lake.

The boulder is surrounded by cows.


The boulder is in the garden of the station house.

The boulder is being moved by the glacial crush.

The boulder is surrounded by cows.

I am with a boy. I am riding to school on the bus.




IV


The boulder is immovable in a field of wheat.

I am slouching home from school.

The boulder is sat on by a child watching sheep.

The boulder is covered in wisps of wool.


I am slouching home from school.

The peat-dark earth is being tilled.

The boulder is covered in wisps of wool.

The space around the boulder is back filled.


The peat-dark earth is being tilled.

The lake is beginning to recede.

The space around the boulder is back filled.

I am walking in the boulder's dream.


The lake is beginning to recede.

The lake-water covers the tops of my feet.

I am walking in the boulder's dream.

The boulder is immovable in a field of wheat.



Wendy Pratt is a poet, author and workshop facilitator living and working on the North Yorkshire coast. Her latest full collection of poetry When I Think of My Body as a Horse won the Poetry Business Book and Pamphlet competition 2021. Her non-fiction work in progress, The Ghost Lake, was longlisted for the Nan Shepherd award in 2021. Wendy's work has appeared widely in journals and magazines. She is also the founder and editor of print magazine Spelt, which seeks to celebrate and validate the rural experience through creative non-fiction and poetry.

1 Comment


Hélène Demetriades
Hélène Demetriades
Dec 12, 2022

Such an interesting series of poems Wendy - love them! Love your play with time.

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