This lovely poem by Kevin Crossley-Holland recalls a first moment of mindfulness, of zooming in on a moment with the aim of remembering.  I do this from time to time, during precious moments: slow it down, stop and savour it consciously.  Such a moment came yesterday.  The gardener was mowing the meadow (soon to be re-converted into a kitchen garden), and mowed around a plant he’d never seen before, dug it up and showed it to us, and we all agreed to save it.  We then found the name in English (yellow salsify, or goat’s beard) and then the Italian name (similar to ‘goat’s beard’, ‘barba di becco a tromba’).

We shared the same joy in discovering a new (to us) plant and giving it a nice place to grow and spread.

‘Do you want to remember

here and now?’


In my bath I squirmed around.

‘What do you mean?  How?’


‘By deciding to.  By wanting to so much

there’s nothing in your head, your heart

but this steamed-up room,

look, this laundry-box, your yellow towel,

you, me, these words…’


I stood up and dried myself, properly.

Mindful, I walked out of Eden.  

See our celebration of this slim, fine collection of poems.

Source: ‘Boyhood’, Kevin Crossley-Holland, The Breaking Hour (London: Enitharmon Press, 2015), p. 12

Photo credit: Alexas_Fotos at pixabay


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