Bower

Penelope Shuttle

I often admire
the ruins of my bower –
hedgebroom, dwarf birch,
green alder,
willows, thrift,
yellow-horned poppy

Where I close a door
in order to study doors,
               their place
               in the miracle of light

Where I hold my breath
in order to study breath,
               its power over me

Where, like a saviour sibling,
I turn from the price on my head
to study an hourglass,
learning
               what time loves –
               the great libraries,
               Patmos, Dublin,
               Seville, Morrab, Venice

Where I travel here and there
in the twilight zone of the past,
               Danae and Perseus
               bound in the seaborne chest,
               Azanor also castaway
with her boy,
               the saint-to-be

I often admire the ruins
of my burnt-out bower
where sometimes I see you
at the helm
setting sail for Spain,

or, later, pondering
the ancient crabbed salt-stained script
of the Captain’s log
in your bower-like cabin
on the good ship Eye of The Wind…



 

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