‘Tis many a year since I’ve seen the lad.
Many a year,
Winter’s harsh hand opening to Spring,
Spring nodding tender acceptance
Summer finding its heated path to Harvest-fall.
Fields near burnt by swift-dying Sun,
rich burden of green-gold crop
beneath Her heavy gaze;
lit day-bright by full-weighted moon.
Dancing and drinking,
In the midst of all,
‘tween crop and capers,
fierce Sun and lemon-eyed Moon,
by a forthright gaze
pressed within an oval frame.
(happenstance, I am sure,
that it should arrive in the Post
from the Great Hall upon the very morning
It is as if we stand within the same room.
Clever eyes look back to mine,
clever and curious
and not a little sad.
I shouldn’t wonder at that,
nor at the mouth which determinedly
There are words there, I deem,
words of humour,
words of bright gold,
words of moonlit
My constant lad.
Spirited, he is,
bold as his midnight pony
and twice as eager.
Lively and industrious,
Why, all of those.
brittle and like to break
beneath the weal of too-long held sorrow.
None know better than I this sorrow,
none know better the sad folly with counts
grief as wisdom within a shadow’d heart.
I know him, this lad,
the ways he has that others count as
It is no happenstance,
the words which spill from pen to parchment.
He shall come and live beneath the Hill with me.
Next year, and every harvest-tide thereafter,
we shall celebrate our birthdays (comfortably)
I touch the face of the portrait,