In the Wake of Home

LANDSCAPE WITH CHILD
(after Paul Klee)


The child is so small
you hardly see her.

She crouches in the corner
with the roses.

The scrawny trees bear twigs
with eyes like candles.

The child is frightened
of their ghostly faces.

She does not trust
those strange transparent h ouses.

their roofs like witches’ hats
or tall church steeples.

She keeps her distance
from the amber windows.

wrapped like happy packages
for Christmas.

She craves the small blue house
beyond the fir-trees

where no ghosts cry
in thin insistent voices

the little tilted house
without a window

where she can shut her eyes
and dream of roses.

***

LOVE POEM: GROWING DOWN

I used to be a big girl
but now I am so small
a single raspberry
swallows up my tongue.

Oh little cobnut
oh little boat with the red sail.


Bright as the center
of a field-eye daisy
loud as an insect
stubborn as a thumb

busy as a marmoset
chirpy as a kettle.

Oh little cobnut
oh little boat with the red sail.


When I was a big girl
I used to be so tall
I could eavesdrop
conversations with the trees.

Stinky as a work-shirt
head down like a badger
reticent as black bread
difficult as morning.

Oh little cobnut
oh little boat with the red sail.


When I was a big girl
I didn’t mind at all
if the river put its cold arm
round my waist.

Wise as a geranium
sullen as a stone
honest as galoshes
sweet-mouthed as a pear.

I used to be a big girl
but now I am so small.

Oh little cobnut
oh little boat with the red sail.

***

Selected Works

Just out! A mini treasure-house of poems and quotations based on World Enough & Time: On Creativity and Slowing Down.
Now in its fifth printing! Christian McEwen gives her readers beautiful insight of how slowness can open doors to sustained creativity. World Enough is now available as an audiobook, narrated by Christian herself.
Creative Non-Fiction
"A wise book -- a quiet feast, a daydreamer's manual, a work of mindfulness, which teaches us to slow down and see the world anew. Read it slowly and come to your senses." Edward Hirsch
Documentary Film
Lively & inspiring video documentary, focusing on tomboys of all ages. Especially useful for girls and young people.
Poetry
Poems of love and loss, lyric, analytic, mordant and comic.
Teaching essays
A collection of essays on teaching all forms and aspects of nature writing.
Fiction & Memoir
An anthology of tomboy writing ranging from the mid-nineteenth century to the present day.