Friday, 21 June 2013

Midsummer Madness

This is a strange poem to be lurking about my brain at the height of the summer.  But then again, maybe it isn't.  It is a poem about one's muse, and as muses can be such contradictory things, it is quite possible that the summer can resemble deep midwinter and be more peaceful for it.  The Sign of Contradiction is in charge; who ascendeth upon the west.  The Lord is his name (Ps67) To ascend with the setting sun seems contradictory, but as Fr Faber once pointed out; our natural journey is from dawn to dusk, but our journey in Faith is from dusk to dawn; it is Christ who takes us through the night. What seems strange simply isn't! I just thank God for it all.

The Thought Fox- Ted Hughes
I imagine this midnight moment's forest:
Something else is alive
Beside the clock's loneliness
And this blank page where my fingers move.

Through the window I see no star:
Something more near
Though deeper within darkness
Is entering the loneliness:

Cold, delicately as the dark snow
A fox's nose touches twig, leaf;
Two eyes serve a movement, that now
And again now, and now, and now

Sets neat prints into the snow
Between trees, and warily a lame
Shadow lags by stump and in hollow
Of a body that is bold to come

Across clearings, an eye,
A widening deepening greenness,
Brilliantly, concentratedly,
Coming about its own business

Till, with a sudden sharp hot stink of fox
It enters the dark hole of the head.
The window is starless still; the clock ticks,
The page is printed.

1 comment:

Robert said...

I don't think I would have understood this poem without your introduction, but probably would have seen it merely as an image of a fox!

A variant understanding of Ps 67 may be that the Lord overcomes the darkness, so that even as the sun (regarded as a god by many pagans) descends and the world succumbs to darkness, the Lord rises (against the stream, so to speak) and gives the world the true light. He is greater than the sun, greater than the pagan gods and his light is greater than the darkness.