Orange eye squinting, the gas heater mutters
at the rain spatted windows and the whistling, piping door.
Outside, trapped in concrete cracks, weeds shiver and tremble,
envious of the swallows that battle to rise against the driving gale.
At the end of the garden, gangs of firs wrestle mightily,
fighting for cones, faintly huzzahing in the sullen and violent light.
Beyond, a blade of sky, dully gleaming pale ochre, scrapes the dark sea,
gouging trails of wild foam that tumble even the creatures of the deep.
Eye bright now, the muttering heater, like a gossip, whispers and hisses
of this new bully in the neighbourhood.
“Mark my words,” it says, “Summer’s here.”