I remember teaching my granny
how to climb the steep slope
from the beach to the headland.
“It’s easy, gran,” I said. “Look!”
I leaped from tussock to tussock,
up the path, each patch of grass
a stepping stone leading me upwards.
She stood there, below me,
breathing hard, her left hand
held against her chest,
just beneath her heart.
“Wait for me,” she said, panting.
“I’m catching my breath.”
I ran back down, then held out
my hand to help her.
It was so long ago,
but I remember it well.
Who now will hold out
a helping hand
as I age, pause, hand on heart,
to catch my own breath,
as I climb, not a steep cliff path,
but the stairs up to bed?