Saturday, October 23, 2010

A Shropshire Lad

For Gavin

Wherever you are, there I am.
I’ve really been there all along.
In all your songs, the quiet parts,
The place where you can hear your heart

Beating. I am there. Inside:
I stir the fires in your hearth,
Coals blanketed by ashes, softly
Smoldering, orange as dawn.

Woken by a cock, or clock,
Think of me as the lad who comes
With crumpled news, kindling, and lungs,
To poke the ashes, toast the bread.

He spoons the jelly in a dish,
Pours milk into a pewter pot,
He listens to the kettle sing.
He remembers everything,

How hot, how sweet, et cetera.
It’s all upstairs, inside my head:
All the things which I might bring,
Which you sometimes forget.

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