#atinylife Friends that are Family

My children run under the spreading tree,

rich with the fruit of swings.

Disappear for hours on end,

cousins and new friends and dogs romp

around rich grass,

tumbledown outbuildings.


Mature trees

look down fondly

from their great height upon

another generation

of wet footprints on their forest floor.


I look out of the window,

feel time loosening its grip.

An ending line

curves into a circle.


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Today, my children inhabit part of my history.



my story and memories

will become

their story, their memories.

A house, a garden, a cocooned day:

as children, as adults.


Across the lawn,

straggled out in age order,

the three year old last in his yellow wellies.


After him,

I can almost see another figure.

A girl treads lightly,

the last full head of dandelion clock gripped gently in her hand.

#atinylife Mill by R L McKinney

There used to be two paper mills in the glen below my house, but it takes an archaeologist’s eye to see them now.

You’ll find traces if you know where to look: the bit of railway track in the Esk, the broken concrete blocks under the birch roots, the knobbled trunk of a fallen monkey puzzle tree that once stood in the mill owner’s garden. Mill

With a little help, the dereliction of industry returns to earth.

Now we walk there and mark the seasons by snow drops and crocuses, savoury shoots of wild garlic, gorse blossom, the progression of greens, yellows, reds and browns as summer turns the corner.

We make campfires and dens, search out frog spawn and blackberries.

This place gives me hope: that wildness will creep between the cracks and that nature will win, in the end.