Caught by the River

National Poetry Day

4th October 2012

A Marriage

We met
under a shower
of bird-notes.
Fifty years passed,
love’s moment
in a world in
servitude to time.
She was young,
I kissed with my eyes
Closed and opened
Them on her wrinkles.
“Come’ said death,
choosing her as his
partner for
the last dance. And she,
who in life
had done everything
with a bird’s grace,
opened her bill now
for the shedding
of one sigh no
heavier than a feather.

R.S. Thomas (from Mass for Hard Times)

(chosen by Robin Turner)

Vanellus, Vanellus

When I’d forgotten them, you told me how
I saw them in the morning going to school,
Tattering down the sallow sky of winter.
Now I know them well: I see them every mile
By flocks and companies in roadside fields
As I drive onwards through these snowcast days
To sit at your bed evoking them for you.

Bernard O’Donaghue

(chosen by Chloe Evans)