After a while we leave the footpath,
continuing in comfortable silence,
each wondering how we can turn today into forever.
Life must still be happening to people,
shops will be open, traffic is stacking up,
and we must believe that there are passengers
in planes that pass overhead.
But out here, where we have no reception,
there’s sky, fields, crow crested trees and us.
The sun is splashing through leaf cover
and I squeeze tight shut my eyes
to see a kaleidoscope rush of yellow and green.
Only when we see the burnt out car,
that’s flattened a path into wheat,
do we feel the tug of our lives,
hold our phones up high
and search for a signal.
Neil Elder has three publication to his name and his work is widely published in journals/magazines (Rialto, Envoi, Acumen among others). His pamphlet Codes of Conduct (2015) won the Cinnamon Press Pamphlet Prize and went on to be shortlisted for a Saboteur Award. He followed this up with Being Present, a chapbook published with the Black Light Engine Room. Neil’s full collection, The Space Between Us (2018) won the Cinnamon Press Debut Collection Prize and is described by Daljit Nagra as “a truly scintillating, cutting-edge debut.” Neil enjoys giving and taking part in poetry readings and he sometimes blogs at https://neilelderpoetry.wordpress.com/