It’s a sunless solstice
on my bridge over the Ribble
but yet the river flows
as if she has done so
since the beginning of time
in spite of the stopping and
starting of the ice floes.
I remember how once-upon-a-time
I held the sun in my hand
like the monster with the monstrous
and wonder if I am the monster from
beneath the bridge who stole
the girl whose bike lights shine above.
As the streetlights light up one-by-one
I ask Belisama – Great Goddess of the Ribble,
Old One, Shining One, Mighty One,
how many suns and how many stars,
how many daughters have swum
down your river to the GREAT BEYOND?
Will they ever be returned like Peter Pan
and the Lost Boys from Never Never Land,
like Pryderi, like Mabon, like the unnamed girls
whose names never reached the tongue-tip of song?
A sunless solstice, bike lights shine bright,
past Tinkerbell’s Nursery
I cycle on.