Mistress Devon

There was no other choice. Prompted to write about a subject dear to my heart, one which I have personal experience of, could only have one reply. I write of my deep passion for a place that brings me joy year after year and has never disappointed.

Day 5 of Napowrimo.

The prompt: In honor of Mary Oliver’s work, I’d like to challenge you to write a poem that is based in the natural world: it could be about a particular plant, animal, or a particular landscape. But it should be about a slice of the natural world that you have personally experienced and optimally, one that you have experienced often. Try to incorporate specific details while also stating why you find the chosen place or plant/animal meaningful.

My response:

Devon Mistress

I recall you clearly

though a year has passed between us.

I know every inch intimately;  


rough bark around your majestic oak,

wind rustling restless leaves,

midday sun filtering through your canopy

against a backdrop of vast sapphire blue.  


Warm salty breeze sweeping

across my face like sweet caresses,

its whispers cooling my skin

in the heat of the afternoon.


For one precious week each year

I leave the smothering grey dust

and drive through the night,

snaking south until buildings fall away.

Dawn’s blush lights Somerset skies.

Tractors stand in half ploughed fields.


Deer float on morning mists,

leaping across open land,

tasting freedom before man awakes.

With a hopeful and impatient heart

I enter Devon’s country roads,

knowing my soul’s satisfaction

is almost within my reach.

Turning into the hedgerow’d lane

climbing hills, plunging deep into valleys,

rising one last time before

reaching my heavenly destination.

Exquisite joy. Exhalation.

Keys removed from ignition.


Baggage left on soft grass.

Troubles and cares dismissed.

Weight lifted from crowded mind.

Turmoil leaves. Peace enters,

with each inhalation

of fresh, clear air.

Tired eyes rest upon your beauty

in complete admiration.

300 miles and one year later,

I am finally home.


3 thoughts on “Mistress Devon

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