Most of the literature I was brought up on was from the northern hemisphere so poetry which celebrated seasons never fitted my experience. Because of that I still get a thrill from the sense of connection with poems which come from a southern hemisphere perspective as this Friday’s choice does.
It’s New Year by Ruth Dallas from Collected Poems, published by University of Otago Press, 2000.
The brimming year spills over in midsummer heat;
A deft wind combs the willow-branches
And coaxes small-talk from the poplar grove.
Tat dissolves in the deserted street.
My neighbours are gone to the sea or inland,
But I like this time of the year at home,
In the space left by motorbikes and a silenced guitar.
I watch a blackbird grow tipsy on gooseberries.
Doors and windows stay open. Three or four
Sheepswool clouds lie distant from the sun.
In the evening I carry water to the beans.
The sky darkens and the clouds grow a halo.
The moon looks up from the poplars
Like the bright eye of the pert blackbird,
Then expands into a luminous marrow-flower
This postcard is a view from earth.
– Ruth Dallas –