night-skyThe lone lamenting of an owl
kept me from my sleep –
that and a silence
foreign and exotic to my ear.
I stood inside the open door
by marsh and brush
to gaze out on a nightscape
free of any human sign.
The far off fells were only
rough charcoal sketches.
Wind funnelled up Borrowdale,
bending dry autumn grass
that glowed in starlight.
Above me they hung
cold and mysterious:
my old friend the Plough
and all her pale neighbours
and all the bright emptiness
that often brought me peace.
But while their great presence
pricked my eyes with tears
and I was mute to my core
shivering with awe and chill
in the timeless quiet,
I wanted nothing
than to cling to this world
with its flaws and frictions,
as only here may we learn
and grow in virtue.
A wider peace followed
than is born of solitude,
and I journeyed back
to the rabble of the city,
to the unsecluded suburbs,
to the tasks and complications,
with new hope
and new affection.

2 replies on “Borrowdale”

Lovely poem. When I see the night sky unobscured by light pollution it always takes my breath away.

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