down Marsh Way past Marsh Way Pond,
down Marsh Lane I think of other marshless Marsh Roads
in Preston, Thornton-Cleveleys, Bolton, but also
of Marsh Road near Banks and Marshside
where hundreds of widgeon and teal
jester the waters pintail arrow
on computer games.
There are no alders
where I lived
without trees or water,
on Alder Close, Alder Grove, Alder Lane,
around the pond in Carr Wood where they cut them down.
On Carr Head Lane, Carr Moss Lane, Carr End Lane,
Carr Hill High School where I first sparred
at Taekwondo ignorant of Gwern
and Brân’s alder shield.
There are no reeds
on Reeds Brow, Reedmace Road,
Reedfield Place, Reed Acre Place, Reeds Lane.
On Rushwood Close, Rushwood View, Rushy Hey
there are no rushes.
There are no willows
on Willow Crescent or Willow Coppice
to weave into a willow tunnel to grant safe passage,
but Willow Cottage Bed and Breakfast
was a haven for two friends –
one of them a heron.
There is no sedge in Sedgefield
but the pendulous sedge is rioting here
on the banks of the brook in Greencroft Valley
and the green is soggy and my wellies are getting stuck
and slipping in and out of the land like a jelly.
It’s coming back it’s coming back –
the marshland of the Setantii.
We have been sinking by an inch each year.
There are things that are born to suck up the roads.