Straw Angus

Straw Angus

Angus sits crosslegged in the grounds
tying leaves loosely, working them snugly.
Every day he’s making ropes and clothes
out of grass, twigs, wool and hay.

Strong hands reject weak stalks,
cable-stitch netting sunlight.
The knitter takes up the jacket
the jacket alone enters the forest.

Hospital clothes smell of hot salt, bleach.
Straw Angus’ clothes are made to last,
his moccasins, his leaf slippers,
his grass boots will step onto the shore.

He has a new purpose for rope.
Against the day of the big storm
he has a halter for pony in hand
leading him home to the island.

photograph: Craig Dunain Hospital grounds