December 21, 2011

Lucy in the sky and John

I've been watching the fairy bulbs grow into the gloom
Of this Cotswold Christmas city street middle afternoon
And it made me think of you.

Poets are finding it hard to get a place, still
(I'm chiding late schoolboys)
And still see beauty's face a dark looking glass through.

It's been a long time since 1631,
Since metaphysics met a physics you never knew,
But what you didn't do remains undonne.

Gloucester 1981

Ha ha, that had you. Not St John Lennon or LSD or even Lucille Ball but John Donne's timeleless winter solstice poem Nocturnal on St Lucie's Day (the shortest day, today) or rather my own take on it 350 years later. Anniversarie For John Donne on St Lucy's Day. I wrote this poem thirty winter solstices ago today. We are all becoming history. We are all slipping into the dark...

Photo note: Not Cotswolds in the 80s but Norfolk now, it that's not an oxymoron in a place that often feels timeless. This is the twin of the summer solstice photo I took in a slightly warmer dusk six months ago (see blog June 21.) A lot of wassail under the bridge since then. More solstice-celebration in Poem of the Month for December in the main site.

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