When did my people stop being indigenous?
Before enclosure stole their commons
And industry stole the shape of their days.
Before peasant labour in feudal field strips.
Perhaps before Vikings, Romans, Celts,
My ancestors lived in knowing harmony
And were people of this land.
Before memory. Before history.
I walk myself into this land.
I walk this land into me.
Step by step, season to season,
Making body knowledge.
I am not my ancestors,
Cannot channel what they knew
But all traditions start somewhere.
I teach my son what I can of presence.
Generations hence we might find
What it is to be English indigenous
On English ground, despite the crushing,
Severing, looking the wrong way and
Getting excited about the wrong things
History of conventional Englishness.
Even we might yet relearn soil songs
Become genuine people of the earth