• Vol. 10
  • Chapter 06


The secluded loch just beyond the pasture
deep in the temperate rainforest
where sometimes a quiet splash
suggests a startled frog
or maybe an elfin denizen.

It’s where we’ll take the boys
after the football goal is up
and after the LEGO’s sorted
because we’ll be looking for adventure
of a different kind, the kind where
faeries dwell in enchantment.

We’ll make up stories as we walk
we’ll murmur softly on the bench
and then they’ll squirm and run along
into the sunshine in cirrostratus embrace
and I shall scoop up a cup of water
from near the bank, and bring it home.

Upstairs, in my study, under my watchful eye —
the dissecting microscope I saved
connected by a colour cam to laptop screen —
we’ll see what wondrous creatures we can spy
like the green euglena,
the ponderous paramecia
the spherical colonies of volvox
and later, if we’re fortunate



we might enjoy the volatility of
my favourite, Vorticella campanula,
as its bell-shaped bodies retract
and elongate again on pendulous stalks.

Maybe, just maybe, if the setup’s good
the boys will see the really magical, fairy
Kingdom of the Protists, and
maybe they’ll exclaim with
scarce-believing delight.

Maybe, just for a moment,
they’ll exult with me,
and then I shall be caught up myself
deep in enchantment, as a temperate tear
trickles down, making its inexorable way
into my greying straggly beard.