Something Vesperal

Something Vesperal

Spectres, vast, remote,
Uneasily wagging their heads
In shrouds of crushed amethyst:

Tomorrow I will confirm
That they are hill crests.
And slopes parade the green oak, olive,

Serried cherry.
On sunken pots of Rome
An iridescence, thick
Or light, signifies the human:

Should the moment return
At sundown’s onset
I will ask what is this colour,

Again a few score of breaths,
And scaling the underside
Of pine branches

An aqueous rose, diffused.
Neither quality, nor adjunct.
How long so old.

from Twenty Tropes for Doctor Dark (Enitharmon Press, 2000), copyright ? Christopher Middleton 2000, used by permission of the author and the publisher.

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