Homecoming by Sue Millard



Sue Millard lives in Cumbria, England. Her website,


showcases her published output of novels and non-fiction which tend to feature horses, carriage-driving, romance, history and rural life. Her poems have been published by, e.g., The Interpreter’s House, Pennine Platform, Pirene’s Fountain, Butcher’s Dog, Lighten Up Online, Snakeskin, and Prole. Her 2012 collection, Ash Tree, was published by Prole:




















The Rayburn smells of cold cast iron, 

coke-dust crunches on the sooty floor

and two mugs stand varnished with last week’s tea.

Our coats hang like bats from their hooks,

stiff empty boots expect work. I unpack,

shove holiday clothes into the wash.

I forgot to empty the bedroom bin,

and the pillows smell of your hair.


I open the curtains to the evening sun

and there’s the land: crushed-velvet hills

rolled and folded with light, birch twigs shining

deep red against riverside pines, and distance

green and grey and blue forever.


Tomorrow I will clean the windows.



Sue Millard