Waiting for the Wheat Poppy to ripen.
The match had just finished,
Nim heads back to the farm. Her friends scattered,
off around her, back to their homes or masters.
Her head full of the delights of the game.
The noise of the stands -
the clamour and wail of it all.
The blood on the grass.
She runs through the fields,
pulling her old pig skin out of its hiding place
rolling it along at her feet as she tugs out her little harvesting hooks.
She runs through the wheat and grass,
ball at her feet and blades in her hands,
whirling and weaving,
the wheat the opposing team.
Nim takes them out in sheaves.
Running through the long grass and the wheat poppies.
letting the seeds cling to her clothing,
the ball raking a path - bending the uprights.
The wheat bows to the ball
the Poppies bend and wave - an adoring crowd
as the ball sweeps them aside.
Wheat twirling in tumbling heaps,
the patterns of Nim's Harvest stretching out
loops and weaves,
an intricate braid.
She runs in silence
listening to her own heartbeat,
hearing the way the blood beats loud as she changes pace,
or jinks out to avoid an errant pebble
or sends the ball scooting out wide and scurries after.
Nim plays ball like she is dancing,
quick turns, her arms flashing with silver crescents.
Cutting the harvest,
unaware she is being watched - someone is watching,
waiting for her to be just old enough, but she doesn't notice.
Right now she is running to the beat in her head
the wail of the crowds, she is harvesting her crop in the pattern
of the blood on the pitch.