The Shrew

Take me to the river, but not right now,
not in this cauld blast, this easterly
striding up from the sea
like a bitter shepherd —

and as for you, you Arctic-hatched, comfy-looking geese
occupying our fields,
you needn’t head back north anytime soon —

snow on the mountains, frozen ploughed clods —
weeks of this now, enough’s enough

— but when my hour comes,
let me go like the shrew
right here on the path: spindrift on her midget fur,
caught mid-thought, mid-dash

from The Bonniest Companie (Picador, 2015), Kathleen Jamie 2015, used by permission of the author and Macmillan Publishers.

Kathleen Jamie in the Poetry Store

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