Those familiar with Fletcher's work will recognise the themes. Guy still lives in Wales (his brother and fellow-poet Ian has moved to Taiwan) and much of his verse evokes the beauty of his native land, or moments in time. The best ones combine both, such as Saturday Afternoon By the River Taff or A Winter Sunday Service At Arafat Church.
Perhaps there's a sadness in some of his work, too. The Last Walk clearly contains something personal for the poet. At any rate there's more to Walking With The Ghosts Of Dinosaurs than mere description. And my personal favourite is the touching Craven Arms , which manages to capture an innocent moment when two readers on a train share a moment of shared pleasure, a book that the man and the woman both enjoy. The brief moment lasts only until the woman gets off at the next station, but the poem allows us to enjoy the meeting for a great deal longer.
I remember Craven Arms
as if it were only yesterday
signal problems ensured we were trapped
at this quiet station deep in nowhere.
It was a soporific day, the sultry, stale carriage air
caused frustrated passengers to wipe their brows.
People willed the wheels to move but in vain
and yet I was contented on the train:
a woman opposite was immersed in a book
and I mentioned I had read it too
before falling into the pages of her eyes.
We talked of other things but then
the train left the washing on the line behind
and verdant fields leading up to a wood.
She alighted at the next stop waving goodbye
then disappeared... under an azure sky.
Walking With The Ghosts Of Dinosaurs by Guy Fletcher, ISBN 9781911113676, is priced £3.99 and available from all good bookshops.