Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Night stirs the trees

Night stirs the trees
With breathings of such music that they sway,
Skirts, sleeves, tiaras, in the humming dark,
Their highborn heads tossing in disarray.

A floating owl
Unreels his silence, winding in and out
Of different darknesses. The wind takes up
And scatters a sound of water all about.

No moon need slide
Into the sky to make that water bright;
It ties its swelling self with glassy ropes;
It jumps from stones in smithereens of light.

The mosses on the wall
Plump their fat cushions up. They smell of wells,
Of under bridges and of spoons. They move
More quiveringly than the dazed rims of bells.

A broad cloud drops
A darker darkness. Turning up his stare,
Letting the world pour under him, owl goes off,
His small soft foghorn quavering through the air.

'By Achmelvich Bridge' Norman MacCaig (1910-96)
Image: The Sleeping Shepherd, Samuel Palmer (1805-1881)
The poem also put in my mind of a song title by Of Montreal - At Night Trees Aren't Sleeping

No comments: