You can eat the air: I don’t mean
sucking in lungfulls, when striding with dogs
on the quaggy crown of Credenhill;
nor drawing deep on Bredwardine Bridge,
as the Wye’s brisk swirl
curls on tight-packed brick.
No. I’m talking Strong Flour, water, a
sprinkling of salt, all laid beneath
Kinnersley’s spore-rich mists
sloping down from well-drilled orchards
garrisoned behind tight-clipped hedges;
sourdough seasoned in Pre-Spring
with crow-flap, owl-screech, buzzard wing.
Dusted too with the ghosts of Dorstone Ridge
slipping their tight stone cists ;
And leavened with the glow of burnished gorse,
blazing over badger mound,
gouged from the belly of Hanter Hill.
Knead this teeming ground
under knuckle and thumb:
All is well. All is seed.
The sourdough breeds and swells.