The Picture Never Taken
Who knows what storms brought him here,
Shaking the shine from his overcoat,
Hanging it on the hallstand by the throat
And combing the rain-clouds from his hair.
No need to ransack the archives to recall
Him barging scrubbed from the scullery,
The picture never taken goes before me,
His face patched with scraps of Lurgan Mail
Middled with red, which fluttered across
The fields as the day wore on, went from him
In small dismissals, cuts won yet lost.
Stubbled with shadow, war-worn from the fight,
His coming home was straight into the east room,
Where darkness gathered, to say good night.