The Hanging Tree by Jonathan Butcher

Under that tree that even in summer hung lank
like rotting ivy, we passed the green bottles
and cardboard envelopes which helped to pass
these weekends, without the usual obligatory
frowns that normally graced our faces.

Without the constraints of the licenced playgrounds
that seemed so far from our grasp, our faces far
too youthful for their acceptance. In their rejection
we allowed ourselves more mileage; each of our
steps leaving mile deep footprints

On the outskirts of that field, in which the grass
merged with the mud-drenched pavements,
we became slightly more exposed, those who
pass by walking children and dogs no longer view
us as a mystery, only a hindrance.

We then crawled back to that tree, now blended with
brick and earth, our yells and laughter still
however loud enough to deafen. For the few years
left before we reside our pleasures to their constraints,
we can still at least now fall without injury.

 

Jonathan Butcher

Jonathan Butcher is a poet based in Sheffield, England. He has had poetry appear in various print and online publications including: Popshot, The Belleville Park Pages, Ink, Sweat and Tears, Elbow Room, Dead Beats, Gutter Eloquence and others. His second chapbook ‘Broken Slates’ has been published by Flutter Press.

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