Sunday, October 9, 2011

Sunday Sabbath Poetry: R. S. Thomas (V)

The fourth and final poem from R. S. Thomas for 2011. (Though it should be clear by now that we could just keep going -- the only thing stopping us being copyright law.) Enjoy.

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By R. S. Thomas

Yeats said that. Young
I delighted in it:
there was time enough.

Fingers burned, heart
seared, a bad taste
in the mouth, I read him

again, but without trust
any more. What counsel
has the pen's rhetoric

to impart? Break mirrors, stare
ghosts in the face, try
walking without crutches

at the grave's edge? Now
in the small hours
of belief the one eloquence

to master is that
of the bowed head, the bent
knee, waiting, as at the end

of a hard winter
for one flower to open
on the mind's tree of thorns.

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