Guest Poem by Michael Tanner

Michael Tanner, a prolific poet at ninety, has gained recognition with poems featured in Country Life and national magazines. In 1976, the Arts Council of Great Britain included his work in 'New Poetry 2.' His debut collection, 'Elemental,' was published in 2020. He also published a novel, 'The Fogou Episode,' and numerous magazine articles on man's detrimental impact on nature. Tanner’s life-experience includes the Blitz, parenting five children, military service in East Africa, many marathons, and learning languages. This poem is from Acumen 108.

Pavement Poppies

A half dozen or so
lending a delicate beauty
to vertical brick,
trodden tarmac,
swayed by the passage
of traffic down to the town.

None noticed their green emergence
from the crack that time digs
at the base of walls –
big enough to admit dust
and water, the staples
of their being.

One day, perhaps,
their progeny will cross
to the other side
though that does not receive the sun:
something they knew from the start.