Wild Raspberries


Wild raspberries gathered in a silent valley
The distance of a casual whistle from
A roofless ruin, luminous under sprays
Like faery casques or the dulled red of lanterns
When the flame is low and the wax runs into the paper,
Little lanterns in the silence of crushed grasses
Or waiting chaises with a footman’s lights,
Curtains hooked aside from the surprising
Plump facets padded like dusty cushions
On which we ride with fingers intertwined
Through green spiky tunnels, the coach swaying
As it plunges down and the tongues slip together,
The jewels fall to the floor to be lost forever,
The glass shatters and the heart suddenly leaps
To hear one long last sigh from an old blind house
That settles further into its prickly fronds,
Speaking of nothing, of love nor of reproaches,
Remembering nothing, harbouring no ghosts,
Saving us nothing at all but raspberries.

from Collected Poems (Chatto & Windus, 2002), © John Fuller 2002, used by permission of the author and the publisher

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