30 poems in 30 days
16 April 2013
I’ll jump before I am thrown,
planning my leap into the unknown;
wherever I land will be safer
than the saddle-stirrup combo chafer
working its way through skin to bone.
This is how I know I’ve not outgrown
the lands of play and make-believe.
I make my wish for a final reprieve.
Here there’s no freedom of prairie
wind. I was right to be wary,
to stay away from the mount;
it’s not at all like stories I’d recount
of cowboys under desert skies,
teaching myself to improvise
on back of armchair, riding strong
into the night. All of this is wrong:
for one thing these fields are green;
I’m on an unstoppable trampoline.
Nick Skelton wouldn’t put up with this.
I should have known it would be amiss
so high up here above the ground;
there’s not a chance of the clear round
I score in the back garden. Bouncing
on the space hopper, I’m used to trouncing
Harvey Smith, Liz Edgar, and David Broome
over obstacles of any size. I want to resume
that life, channelling Black Beauty on my bike,
because there’s so much to dislike
about being out of control on this steed.
I’ll even renounce the Enid Blyton that I read.
It’s all her fault for introducing Bill
at Malory Towers; I allowed my head to fill
with tomboy dreams, where I’m always
on horseback, hero of matinees,
rescuing children smaller than me;
I’m going back to doing it imaginatively.
Enough is enough, I’ll jump before I am thrown;
reality is so far outside my comfort zone.