excerpt | on quiet love



there was a sunlit absence.
the helmeted pump in the yard
heated its iron,
water honeyed

in the slung bucket
and the sun stood
like a griddle cooling
against the wall

of each long afternoon.
So, her hands scuffled
over the bakeboard,
the reddening stove

sent its plaque of heat
against her where she stood
in a floury apron
by the window.

now she dusts the board
with a goose's wing,
now sits, broad-lapped,
with whitened nails

and measling shins:
here is a space
again, the scone rising
to the tick of two clocks.

and here is love
like a tinsmith's scoop
sunk past its gleam
in the meal-bin.


heaney, s. (1975) mossbawn, sunlight

31 Chapel Lane