Monday, January 4, 2016

The Country Child

The country child
runs in and out of rain showers
like rooms; 

sees the snake-patterns in trains,
the sun's sword-play in the hedges
and the confetti in falling elder blossoms; 

knows the humming in the telegraph poles
as the hedgerow's voice
when tar bubbles are ripe for bursting; 

watches bees emerge from the caverns
at the centres of buttercups,
feels no end to a daisy chain, 

feels no end to an afternoon;
walks on ice though it creaks;
sees fish among ripples and names them; 

is conversant with berries
and hides behind thorns;
slips down leaves, behind stones; 

fills his hands with the stream
and his hair with the smell of hay;
recognizes the chalkiness  

of the weathered bones of sheep,
the humour in a rusted fence,
the feel of the white beards that hang there.  

The country child
sees a mountain range where blue clouds
are heaped above the horizon, 

sees a garden of diamonds
through a hole scraped
in the frost patterns of his bedroom window  

and sees yet another world
when tints of cerise and ochre
streak the evening sky. 

He knows no end, at night
he sneaks glimpses of Heaven
through the moth-eaten carpet of the sky.

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