I used to know these woods,
above, the bright sky patterned with bare branches,
below, the path well worn, dead twigs
and leaves packed down, an easy walk.

My camera-hand is chilled, at the ready
and my nostrils take in frozen wet ground,
green beginnings, my cheeks nipped.

I hear the river’s music from below, a fast flow
mingled with the motorway’s indifferent roar.
Above, a crow cries out.

Alone and safe, concealed here,
I want to run free on this childhood path,
and I do, find joy, forget myself.

Ahead, a well-remembered Ash all clothed in ivy,
has fallen, blocked the way, much larger than I knew.
Instead of turning it to firewood, someone has made
a way round, a bypass path, with fairy tale steps.

This is the mosses’ time,
the bare trees wait to start again,
buds not fat, but ready.

Katy Ewing is a writer and artist who lives near Castle Douglas in South West Scotland (and shares her work on her Facebook page).

River Path was first published online through the Gatehouse of Fleet.