What gift is a garland of song?

A poem by Kate Wakeling

A garland of flowers
might be sweet-stemmed,
star-white, steeped in scent:
a lovely thing indeed,
but flowers given must be
clipped and bound.
They droop and fade.

A song, though, holds
its place in time.
It is purest patience
waiting mutely on the page.

It can be woken up
with just the breath
and finger tip.

It can move a soul, let’s say,
two hundred years,
and usher in a bright September day,
where – under a sky swept clean –
two figures may at last lean close.

What gift is a garland of song?

It is time remade,
or a wish, so nearly lost,
held safe.

For a song is alive, always,
in its sounding.

It buds and blooms.

It too can scent the air
with all that’s good and true,

and, with a single note,
it lets the past
grow new.

From a Garland of Song
(c) Kate Wakeling 2023