by Alison Wells (1991)
If we thought that love was gone
that out of sweetness none remained
why should we catch the balmy air
its warm and laden music strained
upon a wise and falling light
the evening coming home to rest
the wide relentless sky still bright
like a heart stretched taut with care
then shall we find brim-comfort there
that what is now, not past is best
the full and glowing day now done.
Why should we catch the balmy air
with glee and toss it through our hair
shout and stomp and shout again
that all we want to be is here?
And yet we grip rich beauty tight
must keep this fleeting joy so rare
within our touch, our taste, our sight
but scent and sound they drag us back
to scenes of sweet and haunting pain
and put us face to face with fear
that what is gone will ever lack
Shout and stomp and shout again
that what despairs cannot be heard
Feel the sun – a love’s embrace
the breeze becomes a tender word
that soothes the soul, the heart and mind
and summer’s wealth of promise stored
makes the falling evening kind
and musings touched with warmth erase
the tracks where restless hopes keep pace
Then loss and aching quiet ignored
both strength and beauty now remain.
This poem appears in the Poetry Against Cancer book. Poetry Against Cancer is a collection of poetry from writers around the world; all the money raised from the book goes to St John’s Ward at Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin, the Haemotology and Oncology ward.
You can BUY IT HERE.