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This slow morph into Yorkshire stone

When she swapped sides

of the Pennines

she found home.

She knew

the walls of millstone grit

were each unique.

But she didn’t hear

the calls of those compressed within.

For they were content.

This is how it starts

with a ravenous drinking

of wide valley skies.

She was fascinated

by the way her rounded shoulders

squared out, her skin roughened.

Long tow-path walks,

legs muscled by hills.

Weir-side picnics.

She had a green tinge

and began to wear gloves year round

as her nails crumbled.

She saw the gifts

of a sunset horizon,

the wuther of Marsden moors.

She was shrinking,

measured her reduction

against the doorframe.

She was charmed by juvenile herons

finding their feet, a leisurely kingfisher,

goldfinch visiting for pumpkin seeds.

She saw the light change.

Tracked the valley moods.

Revelled in thunderstorms.

Then, she was ready to become brick

and one morning her son

found she was gone.

On her bed,

a block of clean stone,

imperfectly hewn.

He carried her to the space

where donkeys tear

the air with braying.

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