It's Tony birthday today and we've just had his birthday brunch made with eggs from a local farm whose shells cracked with an ease and precision I have never known from shop-bought eggs (Note to self: find out why...) and whose yolks were as yellow as buttercups.
|scrambled eggs with creme fraiche and smoked salmon on buttered sourdough toast|
I left Jersey and moved to Kent to be with him on his birthday in 1985 and I remember standing in the open doorway in the kitchen of his ragstone cottage looking at the acres of grass and trees that surrounded it and wondering how I might find my place there. And that thought led me to this year's birthday prose poem for him.
The first one you’d already made: from the doorway of the kitchen I looked across grass to a greenhouse, a swimming pool and tennis court, and beyond, the driveway’s arc of shingle. Then you gave me stone and the sound of water: a cobbled yard, a blooming meniscus of lilies where once a dragon fly landed on my knee. Later you raised the walls of a garden room, crowned them with a roof that curved to a peak, like the ideas for a book taking shape inside my head. Then you presented me with the North Downs and ten thousand apple trees, but brought them nearer so I could walk out, barefoot if I chose, into the green. Today there is cherry blossom outside my door. I watch the drift of bees, their industry that seems so effortless: you are like this. You lay your hands to wood and stone, glass and earth with such patience, such joy, an absence of burden. You gaze across a landscape and see the possibilities there: how a wall needs to curve, how one fruit tree will replace another. How there is always something over the next horizon.
Happy birthday, TB. Love, always.
Hungry writing prompt
Write about the view from your window.