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  • Writer's pictureMegan Willoughby

Cervidae.


There is a family of four living in the Secret Garden,

And dusk is their most favourite time of day.

At this hour they venture from the trees a little further

And trust a little more than usual.


The grass they pass through has turned silver with dew,

As the last of the sun sets amber footpaths onto their backs.

The contrast between the oven warmth and the dankness of shadow is stark at this time,

As is the gateway between day and night,

Life and death.

And they flourish in it,

Pacing silently with no footprints.


They are often mistaken, this family,

By others for others.

I have seen them on different occasions throughout my life.

Once as a child I saw the father,

But mistook him for a detective in a trench coat,

Traipsing the edge of the road full of answers.

I saw him again about five years ago as a huge dead oak,

Sharp on the hillside,

Until he bellowed and ran towards me,

His muscles echoing the earth.

And when I first met the family whole,

Although I saw the mother clear as midsummer,

Her children were cats,

Talking cat in the morning new.


It has taken many evenings sitting together,

But I finally think I could say we are friends.

They aren’t known for being the most approachable lot,

But they check in with me now and then,

Usually when I think that the world is people.

They say hello; man, cat, tree or branch,

And remind me of the spaces between life and death.


The magic in the edge of each moment.


The frost that illuminates the secrets of each detail.


And I love them Dearly.




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