On the shelf at Aldi rye bread schwartzbrot
bread that will keep in wooden chests for weeks
bread you can eat at dawn and do a day’s labour.
The sour-sweet taste of it – a snatched lunch when
we biked through July cornfields to the coast
on old Third Reich tracks, concrete white in the heat.
An ear of corn split with my thumbnail, flour
soft on my tongue. Wind turbines flailed the air.
The A of a granary’s great brick gable,
tented with rye brown thatch, swept the ground.
A peg-mill, redeemed from fire, the whole mill-house
dancing to catch the eye of the wind.
the tracks ran on, resolute, determined,
as if the crew-cut stubble had no choice.
At Schönberg the Baltic hazed the horizon,
little whispy waves nibbled white sand
drifting against breakwaters (nicht betreten).
The drift of things: rye grains carried in carts,
in desperate sacks, in pockets, across
the settlers’ ocean to turf roofed dugouts
to rise as prairie sourdough.
© Mary Robinson 2010, 2017
from The Art of Gardening (Flambard 2010)