She sipped her lemon tea
Within a high walled garden,
Beneath a perfect square of sky
Breached only by occasional clouds or sliding gulls.
Her roses, sacrificed themselves upon the walls,
Reaching upwards to their freedom
Until they lost their grasp towards the top,
Their blood-red bodies falling back, spread-eagled on the wire.
Relentless shadows crept across the ground,
Shrinking, squeezing, pressing out the flowers from her space.
And throughout - despite the darkness carving out the light,
She made the most of every colour, of every scent and every sense.
As single lines were drawn up,
From deep within a hidden source,
And linked together in endless chains
To lift her far beyond this place.
She could raise a sonnet from a page,
Hold it gently in her hands before releasing it to freedom
To fly and soar beyond her sight,
These pictures grew and filled the void.
Her garden never died, never fell to winter.
The high walled garden became her paradise,
A refuge, where her four score years and four
Gave way to the reality of her mind,
Where roamed a woman - in the height of summer.