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John Van der Kiste

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Autumn on Hawks Tor, Dartmoor
by John Van der Kiste

Sunday, April 21, 2002

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Rich red-brown carpets of bracken, spreading far and wide
Call out to be crunched underfoot.
Yet still the autumn sun
Has not dried the morning dew
That clings like silver to gossamer webs
Suspended on the gorse.

While a gnarled old hawthorn stump
Perched on its mossy boulder
Sports its berries, beckoning the birds.
All is silence but the song of the lark,
The swooping, chattering pipits
Guarding their own small corner of the earth.
A delicate breeze dances through the air,
Barely ruffling blades of grass -
Unprotected unconcerned -

Cool, burgeoning mists embrace the air,
Weaving through a cloudless sky,
As soft magenta bell heather, fading, pausing
Takes its bow for another year.

All around
The ghosts of winter hover,
Waiting on silent wings of wonder.

Written in November 2001 from notes and impressions written down during a stroll on Dartmoor, Devon, England

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