after Livingston

that August in Livingston,
we meant just me
and the small dog tracing
the bends in the river
into the far edge of afternoon

one of us thinking of rolling
ourselves into the landscape
for keeps just for the peace,
the other enthralled
by sudden bursts of magpies

all these years after,
I never did find the right shade
to fade into and can’t shake
the sense of going the wrong
way against the river now

as if home had quietly
washed itself downstream
and settled on a sandbar –
lopsided and forsaken

© Sarah Whiteley

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gone to blue

should they ask,

I have gone to blue,
I have gone to green stillnesses,
to the bright-lipped lake
where the reeds still recall

that the wanting is often
greater than ever the having,
and that some days the rift
is only the start
of a different-directioned journey

so should they ask,

I have gone back,
back to the tranquilities,
back to the waters as they were,
and as they may someday be

tell them I have gone to blue

© Sarah Whiteley