July in Devon
by Annie Jenkin

Like chorus girls
pale green frills of fir trees
wave gaily in morning breezes,
skirts lifting to reveal hundreds
of spindly legs, stretching
back in the deep darkness.
Anonymous tracks, only known
to night animals, perhaps
a fox follows his pungent
musky scent to take a shortcut.

Staying on the woodland trail,
my footsteps muffled beneath
years of compacted pine needles
and fragments of dried leaves.
Chinks of sunlight bathe mauve
Rhododendron, capturing sparkles
of early morning dew on grass.
Out of the banks of pink campion,
a silhouette of a young grey

squirrel scampers out. His tail
sparse of fluffiness and small body
disappears into the draping arms
of a weeping willow.
The snap of dead wood alerts
a wood pigeon who flies up,
hiding in an ancient oak.
Two Coal tits fly out, reminding me
it's also time to leave.

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