ON THE OTHER SIDE On the other side of the track, you pass through a second kissing gate.  Canopied by a beech, you negotiate the rising of steps the unevenness of five. A six o’clock breeze punctuates your heat: the moon turns half diaphanous. On the other side, old wildness comes in purples and golds; soft whites. The crickets are in their grasses: branches embrace, safe within their archways. A white bird moves over the water, moving west: a black crab hastens towards an estuarial stone. In your own good time, you will accompany this river, Isca, as it falls into the sea. “Not now,” you say aloud. Later on, turning round in a homeward field  turning west you notice those roses, those vermilion heads above the hedgerow. From the other side of the railway track, they are calling you back…. You are warned. “Not now,” you repeat.  “Not now.” Copyright © JENNY JOHNSON  First published in Sarasvati