White signposts pockmarked brown.
Grass sprung from tyre-trodden tracks.
Impotent cartography on shifting green and umber –
Urban creep, crawling back.
From corset-clad, rocks,
To drystone walls riven
With lichen and slate-shifting press of green.
The trees canopied,
Foliage fingered across
Quivering telephone wires and fading contrails.
Concrete hauteur and mono-blocked pomp –
Temporal veneers over
Heave of hill, over
Relentless nudge of slender white root.
What hold county border
And matchstick boundary fence
On ragged geese skeins
Or paw-padded range of wolf?
Atop grinding earth, beneath broiling sky.
Matthew Richardson is a writer of short stories. His work has featured in Gold Dust magazine, Literally Stories, Close to the Bone, McStorytellers, Penny Shorts, Soft Cartel, Whatever Keeps the Lights On, Flashback Fiction, Cafelit, Best MicroFiction 2021, Writer’s Egg, and Shooter magazine. He is a doctoral student at the University of Dundee, a lucky husband, and a proud father. He blogs at www.matthewjrichardson.com and tweets at https://twitter.com/mjrichardso0