Friday, 20 March 2009

Y Gwanwyn


By Gillan Clarke
Hours too soon a barn owl
broke from woodshadow.
Her white face rose
out of darkness
in a buttercup field.

Colourless and soundless, feathers
cream as meadowsweet
and oakflowers, condemned
to the night, to lie alone
with her sin.

Deprived too of afternoons
in the comfortable sisterhood
of women moving in kitchens
among cups, cloths and running
water while they talk,

as we three talk tonight
in Hendre, the journey over.
We pare and measure and stir,
heap washed apples in a bowl, recall
the day’s work, our own fidelities.

Her night lament
beyond conversation,
the owl follows
her shadow like a cross
over the fields,

Blodeuwedd’s ballad
where the long reach
of the peninsula
is black in a sea
aghast with gazing.
With thanks to Gillian Clarke for permission to post this poem, and also to Madeline Foerster for permission to feature the image of her painting 'Valentine'.


Cathy said...

So beautiful.

Griffin said...

Fabulous. Lovely picture of the owl too. This time Blodeuwedd's bird, not Athene's. I love the full moon face of the barn owl too.

solsticedreamer~laoi gaul~williams said...

thats a gorgeous post~thank you :)

Granny Sue said...

there are powerful images in the poem; it gave me goosebumps. Thank you for sharing.