I’ve listened: and all the sounds I heard
Were music,—wind, and stream, and bird.
With youth who sang from hill to hill
I’ve listened: my heart is hungry still.
I’ve looked: the morning world was green;
Bright roofs and towers of town I’ve seen;
And stars, wheeling through wingless night.
I’ve looked: and my soul yet longs for light.
I’ve thought: but in my sense survives
Only the impulse of those lives
That were my making. Hear me say
‘I’ve thought!’—and darkness hides my day.
The mower stalled, twice; kneeling, I found
A hedgehog jammed up against the blades,
Killed. It had been in the long grass.
I had seen it before, and even fed it, once.
Now I had mauled its unobtrusive world
Unmendably. Burial was no help:
Next morning I got up and it did not.
The first day after a death, the new absence
Is always the same; we should be careful
Of each other, we should be kind
While there is still time.
In a basin of flesh,
surrounded by hills,
the sea glistens blue,
sun warms our chills.
On a concrete port,
we plan our escape,
fight off the locusts
or bear the rape.
Through the mesh of a sunhat,
life is just squares,
scenes stitched together,
threads and hairs.
Singed tips of a wormed mass
fester beneath thatch and flake,
a face turns to dust as a thousand
electrifying ants crawl.
Arm raised to heaven and bereft
of any feeling; the monthly terror,
pulling at eye sockets and nerve endings
locusts and crickets festival.
Cricket bat racquet hand reaches uncertainly
for a link to cry for help,
useless digits blunder and surrender to
a swarm of wasps in my head.
Save the bees,
When they go they’re taking us with them,
Sliding between darkness and yellow,
Day and night.
Save the trees,
When they go they’ll take our breath away,
Be sap in their trunks,
Pulp in their heads,
Rain and shine.