A Dale’s village



A Dale’s village

Under the tor, on the losing bank

as the river horse-shoed round,

a gentle flow of iced tea which now and then

rolled over larger rocks, becoming

quicksilver for a moment in its haste

to return to slow.

And the wind nudged the stretched

leaves into lift, before bending

the tops of the taller grasses across

the pasture, briefly wiping the warmth

from my cheek as it passed and stealing

away on its back the sounds of dogs

and children at play.

As the sun’s brilliance and heat made

the village walls glow like desert sand,

as if the stone was newly hewn.

And under the canopy of the garden’s trees

I sipped a pint of ale, drawn from a

perfect cellar, and watched in silence

the odd shapes of filtered light

dance across the table, for I feared

one word spoken may steal all away.

7 thoughts on “A Dale’s village

    1. Thank you Roland, it’s a new take on an early piece ‘Burnsall’. If you have a moment sometime I’d greatly appreciate your opinion on both, which you prefer/think is the better poem.


  1. The rhythm in this flows as beautiful as a gently flowing river, Nige. That last line, it captures the moment in its entirety, when all is still and quiet and we just want to be, and have nothing mar the thoughts and feelings that accompany the moment, because there are no words as pure.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Nigel, you have given us such a beautiful and sheer experience of a summer’s day. Like walking through it all, see the iced-coloured tea river; the village walls like desert sand.
    So many allegories of beauty.
    I agree with Colleen about the last line ‘ a word spoken might steal it all away’.
    I do relate to this as sometimes I feel like holding my breath.

    Thank you


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you very much Miriam, you will I’m sure be very familiar with the land I describe and I’m sure you’ve enjoyed the view from the cow n calf across Wharfedale many times. I hope all’s well with you and yours.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. You are so right Nigel, there was a week when I didn’t find myself up on these beloved moors.
    The bracken, the heather, the bird life, the shimmer stretching to horizon. I still long for it and do
    visit. My son still lives in Ilkley. 🙂

    I can even recite “On Ilkley moor without a hat…” in yorkshire dialect True:)

    Liked by 1 person

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