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©2017 by Barry WT Hall Artist. Proudly created with Wix.com

Gardener

April 1, 2019

The only job Robbie had ever known

Was his happy job as gardener

For the Bighouse.

8 o'clock prompt,

He arrived at the potting shed

And laid down his old school haversack

On the bench amongst the cracked terracotta pots

And dried out copies of the Hexham Courant.

 

Inside the shed, the summer heat

Pushed against the walls

And the dust danced and shone

In the grubby window’s light.

Inside Robbie's head was his list of jobs;

Cut the big lawn in the morning

And spend the afternoon

In the herbaceous borders.

 

But first,

Into the Bighouse

To see Cook.

Carrots, peas, onions and raspberries

To be picked

For the Bighouse today.

A big task.

Big basket required.

 

The morning hours came and went.

Robbie rolled and lit a cigarette

And looked back.

The green stripes on the newly mown lawn

Were pleasing.

His thoughts turned

To the ham sandwiches

In his haversack.

 

He arrived at his private little place

On the banks of the tiny river.

It was a fair way from the Bighouse,

But worth the walk.

Robbie carefully opened his haversack

And pulled out his sandwiches.

The sun beat down; no one was around,

So he took his boots off.

 

The water chattered

As it gently poured

Between the rocks and moss.

Somewhere very distant,

A train whistled.

Ham sandwiches,

Heat,

Happiness.

 

The afternoon hours came and went.

Robbie rolled and lit a cigarette

And looked back.

The neatly trimmed herbaceous borders

Were as pleasing as the lawn.

The lady of the house approached.

Robbie's heart beat faster;

She said what a good job he had done.

 

He was pleased.

 

Home time arrived,

But not before the soil

Was brushed from the tools

And the barrow swept out and put away.

Robbie picked up his empty haversack

And ensured the potting shed door

Was firmly shut behind him

By turning the large rusty key.

 

He had a list of jobs in his head.

Tomorrow

He will edge the paths

In the morning,

He will weed the rose beds

In the afternoon,

And

Chicken sandwiches too.

 

He was so pleased.

 

 

From Bighouse first published 2014

 

 

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