Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Malmesbury Poems

Almost accidentally, I’ve developed part of a sort of sub-George Mackay Brown cycle of poems based on the details in each of the carvings on the south doorway of Malmesbury Abbey.  I suspect I'd need to go back to collect a whole set of pictures, and then spend proper time with them, to develop the cycle any further.

The Creation of Adam
(picture posted on Monday)

Still life-less man,
God draws you from the mud
your feet as yet unformed.

Adam and Eve hide from God
(I have no picture of my own - but see

Naked, almost skeletal,
you crouch to conceal yourselves
and double up in shame.

Adam and Eve are given a spade and a distaff
(pictured on Monday)

Free and winged one,
fix their fear and hands
to delving spade, to spinning staff.

The Annunciation

Long sleeved Lady,
are you calm or fearful
with an angel by your chair?

The Holy Family

Rest now, Lady,
beneath the bed spread’s fold and fall
for Joseph watches the child.

The Crucifixion

Closest to him
almost touched by his fixed arms,
you echo the squirm of his body.

The Burial
(pictured on Monday)

Bent, intent in grief,
with your delicate fingers
gently lay the body down.

The Resurrection
(pictured on Monday)

Risen one
gazing ahead, moving forward,
your banner streams behind you.

1 comment:

Elizabeth said...

Very moving, Peter. I hope that your break has been a time of refreshment and rest.