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

Saturday, 7 November 2015

let it be enough some mornings

This is an old poem, from a different place, but the wild November weather here, exhilarating in its way when the wind is up, is reminiscent of the winter weather back in Devon, except maybe 2 degrees warmer. This poem has come into my mind several times recently.

Let it be enough some mornings

High tide, a wild morning, wild and stormy,
and you take the leaf-deep stony path
above seal-grey waters
where the geese are dragged
through the sodden air like ripped-away prayer flags
in a crazy disordered dance, and the waves
slap hard on the mudflats’ flanks,

and for once questions like
what use is poetry, if you’re starving, or a refugee
squeezed between torture and war, or bleeding alone
in some dark alley
have momentarily flown, though left you unguarded;

but bent low over the creek the damson tree
drops unremarked a cargo of fruit
on the waters –

mornings like this
grey and green with straggled leaves 
and the rain storming the opaque sky

let it be enough now to hear this one curlew keen,
to have one last bedraggled swallow skim the thick air
over your head, see the inkcaps’ effortless
overnight arrival,
to witness one small flower –
samphire, or a late marsh marigold –
struggling through black mud on its journey upwards

against gravity, pointing the way –
let each day be a small triumph, let it be
two fingers to death.

© Roselle Angwin, Looking For Icarus, bluechrome 2005/IDP 2015


  1. I do love your poem, Roselle. It's what makes life possible, isn't it. Just now, bog-eyed from poor sleep last night, I look through the insect-shit stained velux at a white-pebbled on blue, and the north-east sun lighting our neighbour's honeysuckle: a last flowering before winter sets in. On the south side, our 'golden grove is unleaving', the flowering cherry is shining copper, the grass green as stained glass and yes: 'let each day be a small triumph, let it be
    two fingers to death.'

    Thanks for that uplift,
    Miriam x

  2. Lovely to picture your scene, Miriam. Here there are still fuchsia, violets and fat clover blossoms... xx


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