Saturday, 23 April 2016
Jean Earle: The Fox
Lightfoot on loneliness,
A winter fox
But at the true light in fur is,
Each hair a spirit
Of the whole radiance.
Light and the woods
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
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.