Margaret Beston’s shed


For Sale

I’ll take the garden ornaments – the stone
lantern, bird bath – and I’ll plant up the terracotta
pots with snowdrops, bluebells from the border,
bring them with me for the spring. I’ll strike
cuttings from the philadelphus and the bay
my mother grew – too rooted now to move.
But I’ll leave the shed, its rough wood saturated
with the heat of thirty-seven summers, the fungal
smells of autumn. Hormone powder, plant feed
will be ditched – they’ve served their purpose.
All trace of toxin will be swept away – the field
mice will have full rein. I’ll strip abandoned
cobwebs, stretched like hanks of grey wool across
the windows – wash them down, clear the view.


Margaret is the founder member of Roundel, a Poetry Society Stanza based in Tonbridge where she lives. Her work has appeared in several magazines including,The Frogmore Papers, Obsessed with Pipework, South, The New Writer, South Bank Magazine and Orbis.

Her poems have been selected for anthologies including Did I Tell You and Not only the Dark published by WordAid, and Heartshoots published by Indigo Dreams Publishing. Her first collection, Long Reach River, was published in October 2013.

She recently won First Prize in the short poem category of the 2014 Second Light poetry competition and was shortlisted in the Buzzwords 2014 competition.

A member of the Kent and Sussex Poetry Society in Tunbridge Wells, Margaret has read there as well as at other venues in Kent, and at the Poetry Cafe, London.

Roundel Poetry Tonbridge
Poetry pf 



6 thoughts on “Margaret Beston’s shed”

  1. Excellent poem – you show us so much in this poem. Love the ending where the speaker washes the windows – I am imagining those field mice enjoying the view 🙂

  2. What another unique shed poem – such strong sense of place in this. A place full of memories you can’t take with you when you move – somewhere you love but have to leave for someone new. I found it quite moving – wishing I was the one moving to the place with your shed. Lovely piece of writing – full of a life and yet the beginnings of something new. Thank you.

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