Mapping Edge


Mapping Edge


Finger touched mapped faded edge,
unending ink black shaped lines,
tracing hillsides I walked as a child.

Black tufted strokes, old rough pastures,
where curlews once rose away from me,
ungrazed now, fallen into rush thistled bog.
The parish track, a dry stone wall
field margin, a ridgeway in words,
crossing wetlands to Ffynnon Saith.

Those other edges, the white absences,
neither here nor properly there,
where one land whispers to another.

The silver slithered sea is there,
the sea a swallower of secrets,
secrets the sea sometimes spits back.

In between places filled with longing,
where uncertain minds haunt uncertain places,
my voice comes from the in-between.

Image credit: Rob Cullen


This is part of ROOT MAPPING, a section of The Learned Pig devoted to exploring which maps might help us live with a clear sense of where we are. ROOT MAPPING is conceived and edited by Melanie Viets.


The Learned Pig


Rob Cullen

Rob Cullen trained as an artist, art teacher and social worker. He worked in steel works, construction sites, railways and psychiatric hospital and the Justice system. Rob’s short story “The Choice” was published in “A Fall into Grace” (2016), four short stories in “Ystrad Stories” (2017). Rob provided poetry for John Poultney’s film “Beachcombing”. Rob’s collection “Uncertain Times” was published in 2016. Poetry appeared in Blackbough Poetry, I AM NOT A SILENT POET, The Bezine, The Learned Pig 2017, Red Poets #23, #24, #25, Atlanta Poetry Review Spring edition 2020, and an Anthology of Left Wing Poets in January 2020.