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Tag Archives buddleia

THE BANDED DEMOISELLE

If Ezekiel’s watchman, or, rather, God’s

had been on the job there would have been

some sort of heads-up – a cornet perhaps

if not a fanfare – that the Parish Church clock,

put in place in 1867,

would be chiming again, hours and quarters,

this summer morning. But it just happens –

almost surreptitiously, like some

member of the chorus in an opera

sneaking on late from the wings. And late it is

by a few minutes – as before it was fast.

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THE DEARTH OF HONEY

Where the mortar between old bricks has crumbled

in the weathers, where the felt of a flat roof

has lifted, beneath slates above a gutter

through a gap the height of a feather,

among cascades of ivy on a high wall

topped with broken glass, wild bees are about

their business, crowding buddleia, bending

stalks of lavender, devoted subjects

of their queen, diminutive beside

dying cousins. On their fragile wings

we, republican or monarchist, depend,

each flight an errand of life,

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SOMETHING OF SUMMER

While, at the last outpost of its empire,

a blackbird sounds reveille and, next door,

red admirals repose in buddleia,

something of summer, caught in the early air

and gathered, a lightness, perfumed, bold,

is touching narrow, walled-in gardens

where, high over houses epochs old,

wood pigeons flute in maples and a thrush,

lost in the snows of a pear tree, cuts notes

like glass. Neglected blossom lights

along the chipped and blackened bricks, a rush

of scent from satiny blooms,

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