Whose Walk Is This

Whose map is this which we survey
To chart a course by right of way
And with confidence our fears allay,
So from the track we cannot stray?

Whose feet are these within the boots
That march among the daisy roots,
Trampling the grass and tender shoots
While striding on the country routes?

Whose stick is this that firms the tread
To stop the fall heel over head,
But leads us on the path instead
Past the river bank and nettle bed?

Whose coat is this that’s never dry
When slanting rain falls from the sky
And through gritted teeth to wonder why
The elements we do defy?

Whose hand is this within the glove
That helps the rambler out of love
Ascend the climb with a gentle shove
And devour the view from up above?

Whose hat is this where a head is lain,
Worn in true Shakespearian vein,
That soldiers on time and again
In thunder, lightning or in rain?

Whose walk is this by hill and dale,
Blown along, backs to the gale,
Searching out the sheltered trail
That sees us home before the hail?

Whose walk is this up in the wood,
Where ramblers shimmy past the mud,
A remnant of the winter flood,
Now feeding trees to bring on the bud?

Whose walk is this one summer’s morn
Comfortable in shoes well worn
Skylarks singing over corn
On the Downs above Eastbourne?

Whose walk is this which we enjoy
That urges legs to redeploy
The route long travelled by the hoi polloi,
Be they young or old, girl or boy?

Roger Lee