Runner-up: Walking in the Park on a Saturday Afternoon

Walking in the Park on a Saturday Afternoon

They’d been walking so long that the lake had whitened with pedalos.
‘Let’s sit here’ she said, pointing to a gnarly oak stump, weathered by natural erosion,
or perhaps it was fashioned by somebody skilled with a chisel.

As they sat side by side, quiet enough to hear the willows weeping,
Still enough to feel the warmth of russet autumn leaves,
A couple on roller-skis raced past on their phones.

‘Sometimes’ he said ‘I feel it’s all going too fast.
We shouldn’t mess with laws of Nature or worship at the altar of technology.
We’ve lost our way.’

‘We’ve lost our way?’ she said.
She shook her head, the mantra of her childhood ringing in her mind:
‘Mother Nature is cruel. She needs to be met with compassion.’

And she smiled to herself,
Grateful that his parents had been able to conceive a son
Though some had called it unnatural.
The technique was the brainchild of a passionate human mind.


Jessica Harneyford

November 2015

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