by Ted Hughes

Here is the fern’s frond, unfurling a gesture,
Like a conductor whose music will now be pause
And the one note of silence
To which the whole earth dances gravely –
A dancer, leftover, among crumbs and remains
Of God’s drunken supper,
Dancing to start things up again.
And they do start up – to the one note of silence.
The mouse’s ear unfurls its trust.
The spider takes up her bequest.
And the retina
Reins the Creation with a bridle of water.
How many went under? Everything up to this point went under.
Now they start up again
Dancing gravely, like the plume
Of a warrior returning, under the low hills,
Into his own kingdom.


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Ted Hughes
Ted Hughes