Saturday, 23 April 2016

Jean Earle: The Fox


Lightfoot on loneliness,
A winter fox

Not hunted
But at the true light in fur is,
Each hair a spirit
Of the whole radiance.

Light and the woods
And revelation
Come all together as though prophesied.

Later, in weariness,
I dreamed a fox,
Running on sparkle. Delicate tread
Indented trackings of mastodon,
Dinosaur back and back
To infinity's edge. And there the fox sprang off
Into the dark. I saw his diamond brush
Illuminate nothingness.
The imprints faded,
Fused into man's, with links of holy fire.

This was the long-expected
Comet. Emmanuel. God-with-us.

I had not thought to see that
In my time. And was asleep
Only a minute.


Jean Earle was a long-lived (1909-2002) Welsh poet. This is from 1985. She's sometimes described as a "naive" poet, as if the directness of revelation is naive. The poem flows into Christian revelation and also goes back to more primitive elements in the brain/spirit.