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Pathway to Paradise by Mary Hodges

Once children walked on this country lane
Free from fear, safe from traffic,
Watching ducks on the river, lambs in the fields,
Gathering wildflowers from the hedgerows.

Now the narrow lane is heavy with petrol fumes,
Cars roar around blind bends,
Tractors trundle along, dragging heavy trailers.
Children no longer walk here.

Local people were determined to fight
For the right to walk in safety.
So they made the Millennium Way.

To the outsider it’s just a footpath
Raised on a flood bank beside the Wyre.
Lovely views, wildlife a-plenty
Ducks, geese, the occasional heron,
Swallows and swifts in season, seagulls too.
Primroses blossom, then cowslips
Then daffodils in golden hosts.

The perfect place for a quiet walk
At a pace I want to go.
Seats where I can rest and dream,
And contemplate cows in one field,
Lambs gambolling in the other.
The bow of Bowland hills in the background
The River Wyre, brown and sinuous, flowing to the sea,

More to me than a footpath, a link to life.
Friends wave as they pass my window;
Acquaintances exercise their dogs,
Strangers with walking boots and poles
Set off for a day’s hiking.
The Millennium Way – my pathway to Paradise