Margaret on a Bench
Julia Margaret played with light,
turned urchins into angels, conjured
stories from shadows. Here sunlight slides
round the shade of short days, night-dark shadows
paddle your blue feet; winter sun dazzles,
shuts your eyes. Sepia grasses squeeze
memories of summer; fickle as frogs
they leap, dance in the wind, shift in the light.
Impatient in your warm earth-coloured coat
your hand ready to slice walnut cake, pour
strong flasked tea to steam in the cold air.
Beside you the photographer’s bag gapes
waits, like a cradle while the camera
taking your picture plays tricks with the light.