It’s warm in there. Sometimes it steams.
I’ve heard it said, on occasion they
spontaneously combust, but for now
it hosts a family of hares: a central-
heated, albeit pungent, winter abode.
I don’t see them in there, but in the stony
fields, fit otherwise only for sheep
and sometimes the horses, free to wander
as far as Twigg’s land. Then, we have to go
fetch them, trudge through muddied gateways,
past buckled walls, down and up Intake
Dale to where the cowslips grow in Spring.
Lorries trundle from and to the quarry.
Once, I heard of a tailback. Glynn, on a
downwards swing lay across the lane, a sign
by his side read: Please run me over. Isabel
gave up after decades, left for an old folk’s
bungalow down in Bradwell, by the brook.
Can’t have made much, the farm full of cars
rather than cows. One day, someone’ll be
overjoyed to find a nineteen fifties
Hillman, rusted chassis half buried
by a derelict barn. It’s a harsh life, but on a
full moon you’d hear Glynn’s luxuriant
baritone resonate against the stars.
About the author
Lauren Foster is a student on the MA in Creative Writing. 'Coplowdale' received an honourable mention in the GS Fraser Prize 2018. Photograph by By Roger May.