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Ian Brinton



                   for John James

In order to pen my pastoral poems true
I place my couch beneath the stars as fortune-tellers do:
Close neighbour of the clock-towers I muse
On solemn sounds carried on the wind.
Chin resting in both hands, from attic heights
I overlook the singing workshop buzz,
Chimney-pots, bell-towers, the city’s masts
To gaze at the sky’s ocean, prompting visions of eternity.

Sweet it is through mist to watch the birth of star
Through blue, a lamp lit in a window,
The hearth’s ribbons of smoke climbing upwards
And the spilling of the moon’s pale wonder.
I shall observe the passing of the seasons
And when the white sheets of winter’s snow arrive
Will shutter up the doors
To weave my pleasure-dome within.

My dreaming shall be of distant blue,
Of gardens, water threading its channel through
Alabaster forms; of kisses and of constant birdsong,
Background to childhood’s Eden.
Turmoil from the street will vainly knock my window pane,
Not rousing my head from my desk
For I shall be submerged in pleasure
Tracing springtime with my desire,
Kindling sunshine from within and
Warming my world with burning thought.


     After Charles Baudelaire’s ‘Paysage’, November 1857



Copyright © Ian Brinton, 2018