from BARDO

The stars are in our belly; the Milky Way our umbilicus.

Is it a consolation that the stuff of which we’re made

is star-stuff too?

– That wherever you go you can never fully disappear –

dispersal only: carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen.

Tree, rain, coal, glow-worm, horse, gnat, rock.

Roselle Angwin

Friday, 21 June 2013

poem for the summer solstice 2013

The moon-daisies are late this year

their constellations in the banks and verges

faint and incomplete in the thin drizzle

that makes the moors with their stone-row horizons

invisible, a lost wild kingdom from which today

I’m exiled.

Thirty-five years ago it would have been that we

stepped out from the Sixties concrete building

by the river where the houseboat was always

half-stuck in mud and where you instantly

an accident if symbolic dropped our new

marriage certificate in an oily puddle

and our mothers exchanged glances.

I haven’t seen you in decades, but anyway

I’ve always felt unmarried. We were young.

My mind probes further back: those swifts

ready to leave, shrilling the hot mountainside

the cherry-trees on the lower slopes

the apple meadow where once

the wild boar chased me up a tree.

Six months that changed everything I knew

and joined me to a much older past

than ours, and our past really is another country –

its territory a fiction, half-remembered history

open always to our own rewriting; grist

to the great wheels that might make

at last some meaning from experience.

© Roselle Angwin 2013

NB: I know that a lot of people come to my blog via searching for solstice poems. I've written a poem for most solstices and equinoxes and some of the cross-quarter dates of samhain, imbolc, beltane and lughnasadh since I began this blog two and a half years ago, and most of them are less personal than this one. If you put any of these keywords into the 'search this blog' bar you should get there (note that I tend to call the spring equinox the vernal equinox - though inconsistently). 

If by any chance you wish to repost these poems – and you're welcome – please please credit me and provide a link – they're my property and copyright. 


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