Fortitude

Each evening on the journey home
we drive beside the sea
‘neath a big sky that sweeping view
How fortunate are we?
The shingle beach right there beside
the road just yards away
a pleasure bringing fortitude
on each and every day

©Jemverse

Photo – the bay of Sussex, Southern England – Jempics

Ditchling Down

Ditchling Down
the path so steep
and us all slippy-sliding
In squelchy mud
unbalanced from
the frigid winds all hiding

Ditchling Down
with Weald below
the distant view confiding
as we struggle
down the gradient
quite often all colliding

Ditching Down
the village there
sheltered and presiding
Each of us
a respite from
our finished walk providing

©Jemverse

Photo – Ditchling Down, Sussex – Jempics

Of Beacons and Mud

Went for a walk for a birthday
All of us met at the Star
heading off to the Beacon
via Falmer so not all that far
Up through the woods over Stanmer
frolicking under the trees
rained a lot here so the mud was
quite frequently up to our knees

The sunshine made an appearance
and the rain kept away for the day
replaced with wind that was boisterous
and with us for most of the day
But we found our way to the Beacon
and took pictures there of the Weald
before heading downwards to Ditchling
down steep paths and more muddy yield

The Bull was packed and was heaving
but we found a table where we
could sit for a while with a pint and a laugh
by the window when it became free
And then it was all back to Shoreham
legs aching and needing a rest
safe in the knowledge that days like these
are always the absolute best

©Jemverse

My eldest daughter – Emily Rose (forefront right) – hosts a traditional walk every year for her birthday. This year we walked from Falmer to Ditchling via Stanmer Woods. Photo – Jempics

Thoughts of walking

My brother sent a text
reminding me to book
some dates in May when
we’ll take another look
and with a best foot forward
and packs and beating heart
we’ll head into the Sussex hills
another walk to start

These are for days of talking
and taking in the view
of muddying our boots
and the walking things we do
These are for camaraderie
and sheltering from the rain
and walking with my brother
in the Sussex hills again

©Jemverse

Photo – Jempics

Tottington Wood

To Tottington Wood
in the mud and the rain
resolute and determined
we seven we came
And with best foot forward
we entered the trees
squelching through mud
which came up to our knees

The rain was incessant
and got in everywhere
but we all had fun
and didn’t much care
Because we are the Crouchers
for ever and ever
with fun times and frolics
as family together

©Jemverse

Photo – Emily Rose Croucher

Ditchling Beacon

Ditching Beacon in late summer
with views of Sussex Weald
walking slowly in the heat
cast by the sun’s strong yield

Wolfgang’s with us trotting slow
sniffing here and there
Inquisitive, excited
the moment here to share

By and by we’ll head on home
but an ice-cream first I think
Eating quickly, lest they melt
whilst Wolfgang has a drink

©Jemverse

Photo – from the the top of Ditchling Beacon, West Sussex – Jempics

[Wolfgang is our daughter’s 10-month old Patterdale Terrier]

Long Mile Walking

Long Mile walking
Darkening sky
Sun a warm glow in the west
Toe in the water
Cool lapping sea
Smiling at nature’s behest

Smooth sand rippled
from undertow’s pull
revealing a rich treasure trove
I pick up a pebble
washed by the sea
as along the Long Mile here I rove

Driftwood abandoned
cleaned by the sea
Caressed by its loving hand
I’ll take and will treasure
as a gift from Long Mile
here on the fine Sussex land

©Jemverse

[Inspired by ‘The Long Mile‘, posted on Jemverse on 18 August 2014]

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