Climbing up Hills Before its Too Late

Looking down at my fleshly toes,
I creak to the loo at 4 in the morning,
a listing dreadnaught,
careening into doorframes.

Flick of the cold light puts first signs of age
in stark relief,
and I transfix on swollen pink
round the callouses

I’ve gathered like memories.
There was once a boy who
drove these long-neglected feet
over wild fields of autumn,

revelling in the sensation
of sharp, dry leaves,
that crackling sound of victory,

young projectile body,
tumbling down slopes,
a mad-capped wind at my heels.

Do I still want to climb mountains,
like that one over behind my house,
with its antenna
erect and ridiculous and
contemptuous under the sky?

I dream of that hill,
and the things I might find up there,
a place above the heaviness
of concrete,

the weight of noise.
Up there, I know,
on nights thick with summer
treacle,
young bodies still writhe and love
in the grass under the stars.

Up there,
musical bodies go off like
firecrackers.