Paul Archer - photo Paul Archer - poet, translator



Not swivelling away

You can set it all against the turning of the year's cycle,
the soft shapes of twilight, the brilliance of day,
the lone corncrake in the marsh,
the fog-borne flock of fleeing geese,
because it has no care for you.

If the world gives you any value, you are fortunate,
for this much it knows and will not forget -
there must be a sacrifice, the blood spilt on the leaf,
in tracks in the snow, under the brushwood,
along the fence line of a field.

There's a raven's cry, a fox's bark, the sagging
struggle, the ritual of teeth devouring flesh,
eating, being eaten, succumbing, triumphing,
or just waiting, waiting, hovering, hiding - it's in the eyes,
staring, not blinking, not swivelling away.

© Paul Archer - All Rights Reserved