The Longest Barrow
The fairies have reclaimed this place
of oak and ash and thorn,
Tentatively taking the mounded earth
Where once the railway ran,
Now stripped of iron and engines
That once drove the Old Ones away.
An immense long barrow it is now,
Holding the forgotten land within,
an England that hides, left behind by time
But never lost and only hidden.
Straighter than nature’s rules allow,
This ridge splits unfamiliar crops;
I swear the fairies came to greet
The rows of roses, an ordered army,
Serried rank on rank without a bloom,
Bred for nameless gardens.
Perhaps when each is dug, encased in pot
Ready for the eager gardener’s hands,
Unseen stowaways may hitch a ride
And recolonise this land with fay.