A night burst of inter-galactic loving
has rinded the garden white
our lawn a west country landing
for moon beams,
spent kisses iron in our lawn.
Through my study window
I watch my boys’ garden play, their
joy pricked by the morning’s cold blade,
what better way than football
to crack open this day?
They are visible, then gone.
And back, noise first, they
maul merge and pull apart,
one boy hoofs the ball
and the lawn is empty.
My daughter arrives, chasing the dog,
which chases the boys who chase the ball;
the silly girl hooting, already the action is drawing off,
she is treading home down icy steps
and my heart is lost to her.
Her brothers stop to conspire,
witness to something amusing;
their low gravity of the same opinion.
and at that moment
new planetary developments flare
sun rays against the trees
the garden catches fire
and my boys
One gilded boy shoves the other
he shoves back, and they take off.
The fire is doused, the lawn dulls to ice
and I am alone, watching nothing
imagining what comes next for them:
clowning and hulking on into
men with full hands
and world-rounded faces
until their own loads turn them grey,
and mine kills me.
This is what I mean by the stage of our lives:
In this garden we will watch our children come and go,
rising as slowly we fade.