Herefordshire Sourdough

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Herefordshire Sourdough

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.

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