My Mind

Personal website of M.G. Daniel. Sharing poetry, my writings, snippets from my life and whatever's on my mind.

The Grass is Greener

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I will remember England fondly,

Miss my friends dearly, but it is

Not the nightclubs of Birmingham

That hold me like a swain,

 

Or galleries, parks, and theatres

Which make me want to remain.

It is a cow, lying on the countryside,

Ruminating memories of my childhood pastures.

 

It is the grey of houses, caught in days dull

As the mist pressing down on the spirit of

Childless streets, marking time to winter pain,

Stomping feet to hasten the homeward train.

 

I did not always like the flowers of snow

Showers, sometimes envied the blooms of spring,

But it is not the gloom of early nightfall

That drives me nostalgic, or friendless faces

 

In a downpour which make me homesick.

It is the stark greenery of summer, when

The kingdom blossoms, and bares bodies

Etiolated, when nude skies mate

 

With towel-terraced lawns, groping at

The fleeting sexuality of a sun, which

Comes so rarely here, but is commonplace at

Home, where years are sold unquartered.

 

Only once, in summer, I heard the laugher

Of England, a familiar clatter of pots echoing

Round my village hills, saw time’s cosmetic surgeon

Unpeel layers of coldness, shed grimness, a nation

 

Made over for a period so brief, to reveal

People; a clutter of men, rollicking, moments

Round a rosebush. I want to tell them of

My island, where there is always a blue sky

 

Powdered with puffs of white clouds,

And the horizon’s pub close at hand

To reach for a drink and expand in warmth,

Soaking in the beauty of a sunset;

 

That of need, we live in foreign lands

For rejuvenation; when the mind stalls,

We rev off to Englands for a dip in the

El Dorado of the other side; and return.

I first shared this previously published poem (in my Mindfield collection) on this blog exactly one year ago on June 24, 2015. I am posting it again because it gives me an excuse to talk about England, Brexit, immigration and the poem.

  1. I love, love the British accent – all variations of it. If Brexit means the Brits get to keep that accent then …
  2. Apparently, the Brexiters wanted to go back to their little island, just as I wanted to return to mine when I wrote the above poem. I was studying in England for a period and I can say without qualification that period was the best time of my life. A strange thing happened while I was there: all the things my many relatives and siblings who resided in England at the time told me would make me hate the place, like the rain/grey/damp for e.g. , were the things that made me love it. All the things they said would make me want to remain where the reasons why I wanted to go ‘back home.’ I tried to capture that contradiction in the poem.
  3. I am a legal alien (immigrant) in Canada; in fact, I ‘became Canadian’ a few years ago. I will share in future post why I made that journey. Just want to say I am not one of those who will jump on you from a great height if you say one word questioning mass immigration. I embrace the saying that no matter how thinly you slice something it still has two sides.
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Author: M.G. Daniel

I am a lifelong scribbler who is now focusing on poetry and becoming more established as a writer.

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