A Line on the Map. National Poetry Writing Month Day 29.

New Maps
New Maps

So there we are, looking at the map, stood in a field, wondering where the wall/footpath/fence has gone. The black line on the map giving to us the sense of something physical on the ground. Something that may have long since departed this place. It still means we carry on, just using some different marker to get where we are going, and if all else fails, get the compass out and at least find where North might be hiding. I’ve just received my new maps, ready for a trip later in the year, and now I get to trace possible routes and ideas until the moment we see how different the land can be in the real world.

A Line on the Map.

We’ll start here with the footpath,
although maybe that’s optimistic,
it may just be footprints in mud, grass
or just gaps in the fence, a stile.
It’ll change as we walk, to rocks,
to scree, bracken slopes or stream beds.
Rock filled gullies, quarry blocks or,
who climbed here before and left us
a cairn, marking a turn to lead us along
the cliff edge or turn us onto the ridge
and before we arrive at the final climb
up the cut, to the col, along the beck
by the ledge, over the scar and up
finally to the top, the peak, the summit,
the lonely trig point waiting to prove
that yes we were finally there.


6 thoughts on “A Line on the Map. National Poetry Writing Month Day 29.

  1. [ A. R. Ammons – for me ] finally there.

    checkers tactics
    taught her grandson
    hoarded guilts
    make bright quilts
    still waters
    of words heap
    up a cairn
    seed in fruit
    olive seed
    in the stones
    sun reigns
    rain shines
    her prom dress
    bowl double
    street light
    and moth
    thought to a
    bouillon cube
    see what you
    want: look in-
    to any
    something with
    broken heel
    make my point

    At the pre-writing stage, collecting has its value,
    as propounded by A.R. Ammons (we graduated the same college) from Wake Forest
    “…. and on up through the spheres of diminishing air
    past the … to bear on a willow-slip and
    you cannot unwind a pebble
    from its constellations … unbundled them
    from the piles of rags and …” [ a cairn and a cairngorm ]


    1. Hi Bob,
      I’ve read one piece of Yenser before, interesting to try and follow his links down the chain of events, I like it like that. But it can be hard work to dig into it. I think I’ve got some good starting points from this month, as well as some bricks 🙂 but it has been good to get work done and have the ideas to start with as the year progresses.

      Thanks for coming again to visit and comment, always thought provoking.



  2. was recently at an exhibition (New Art Gallery, Walsall) of Richard Long’s work (well, some of it) and this piece reminded me of the exhibition.
    Not sure if you have come across this sculptor yet?


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