The paddocks present blind flanks to the sun
and to the two of them, the storm king
(a little winded) and his daughter. Silent, unaware
that her needlepoint art
has unstitched the moment’s design,
she helps him
with his intricate, familiar coat, its pattern today
gold-finialled clouds, impasto sky.
Following the track along evening’s channels
he thinks he recognises those clouds
from old movies where they billow behind villages,
over moors, silent as the soundtrack
except for the projector’s pulse.
Lights come on
like diadems in lit crescents; tiny
people are moving across the rugby fields,
shouts of encouragement rising with the mist
over suburbs spilled into
late autumn’s crucible.
Though assigned to its restraint the weather
reminds him he is in harness, must placate
as he is petitioned. If she bears
instruments about her ears,
he is struggling to remember the music he heard
in the body’s bronze climate.
Perhaps they’ll talk again when saying less
is not a weakening. For now his cry for the topsails
echoes from promontories of the past.
Her insouciant ship
tacks into a harbour of exams and friends.
For the departing audience
there is no further scene,
only loose threads of colour, threshed
in the harried air.
Meniscus, April 2019