Four poems by Brenda Chamberlain
Four poems by Brenda Chamberlain stories
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# TO DAFYDD COED MOURNING HIS MOUNTAIN-BROKEN DOG > Tears that you spill, clown David, crouched by rock,
By MilkbottleF https://www.reddit.com/r/...

Four poems by Brenda Chamberlain

by MilkbottleF

# TO DAFYDD COED MOURNING HIS MOUNTAIN-BROKEN DOG

> Tears that you spill, clown David, crouched by rock,

> Have changed to nightmare quartzite, chips of granite.

> The valley chokes with grief-stones wept from eyes

> New-taught that death-scythes flash in the riven block

> To reap warm entrails for a raven-harvest.

> Withdrawn in the stone-shot gully of the barren ground;

> You mourn, baffled by crevice and goat height

> Proving tricksy as dog-fox run to earth on the scree,

> For one who lies in company of beetle-shard and sheep,

> For him whose loose dropped brain and lungs hang coldly

> Trembling from the flowered ledge down iceplant ways to silence.

> The tears you shed are stone. So leave the dead to stand as monument.

> Be shepherd friend again, clown grinning under wet eyes,

> Stopping your ears to sound the valley breeds;

> A corpse-man's cry for succour, a dead dog's howl.

# YOU, WHO IN APRIL LAUGHED

> You, who in April laughed, a green god in the sun;

> Sang in the bowel-rock below me

> Words unknown: but how familiar-strange

> Your voice and presence. Other quests

> But led to this; to lie unseen and watch,

> From cloud-ascending rib and slab of stone

> Your downward passage, greendrake-garmented:

> A blade of wheat, watered in desolation.

>

> O love in exile now,

> I keep the hill paths open for you; call

> The shifting screes, warm rock, the corniced snows

> To witness, that no wall

> Precipitous, ice-tongued, shall ever stand

> Between us, though we rot to feed the crow.

# DEAD PONIES

> There is death enough in Europe without these

> Dead ponies on the mountain.

> They are the underlining, the emphasis of death.

> It is not wonderful that when they live

> Their eyes are shadowed under mats of hair.

> Despair and famine do not gripe so hard

> When the bound earth and sky are kept remote

> Behind clogged hairs.

>

> The snows engulfed them, pressed their withered haunches flat,

> Filled up their nostrils, burdened the cage of their ribs.

> The snow retreated. Their bodies stink to heaven,

> Potently crying out to raven hawk and dog:

> Come! Pick us clean; cleanse our fine bones of blood.

>

> They were never lovely save as foals,

> Before their necks grew long, uncrested;

> But the wildness of the mountain was in their stepping,

> The pride of Spring burnt in their haunches,

> They were tawny as the rushes of the marsh.

>

> The prey-birds have had their fill, and preen their feathers:

> Soft entrails have gone to make the hawk arrogant.

# LAMENT

> My man is a bone ringed with weed.

> Thus it was on my bridal night,

> That the sea, risen to a green wall

> At our window, quenching love's new delight,

> Stood curved between me and the midnight call

> Of him who said I was so fair

> He could drown for joy in the salt of my hair.

> We sail, he said,

> Like the placid dead

> That have long forgotten the marriage bed.

>

> On my bridal night

> Brine stung the window.

> Alas, in every night since then

> These eyes have rained

> For him who made my heart sing

> At the lifting of the latch,

> For him that will not come again

> Weary from the sea.

>

> The wave tore his bright flesh in her greed:

> My man is a bone ringed with weed.

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