Wednesday 12 December 2018

Raglan Lane (for Patrick Kavanagh)

Brendan Kennelly

In Raglan Lane, in the gentle rain, I saw dark love again,

Beyond belief, beyond all grief, I felt the ancient pain,

The joyful thrust of holy lust, I stretched on heaven's floor,

One moment burned what the years had learned and I was wild once more.

The years' deep cries in her sad eyes became a source of light,

The heavy gloom and sense of doom changed to pure delight.

And as we walked in joy and talked we knew one thing for sure,

That love is blessed togetherness and loneliness is poor.

Then I grew rich with every touch, we loved the whole night long,

Her midnight hair on the pillow there became an angel's song,

Her happy skin, beyond all sin, was heaven opened wide,

But as the dawn came shyly on, I slept, and she left my side.

Why did she go? I'll never know, nor will the gentle rain,

Her up and go was a cruel blow, and yet I felt no pain

For I had known her body and soul in my own loving way,

So I lay and thanked the God of love at the dawning of the day.

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