King Horse

Horse thinks he remembers two things from the past

He finds it hard not to see the meadow as a battlefield,
the shimmering ghostly troops
a heat wave after Michaelmas
the crack of fire,
bushes of gunpowder charging from the copse

At this point, she will dismount and lead his muffled clop
through the drifting snow and the lung-shadow trees

He knows the night will be thin;
the tail lights of aeroplanes will wink above the stable,
their insect buzz betrayed
by false forgotten weather

And on waking, he will recall his second memory

His blank nobility
before the bridle is fitted
kindles spectral light
refracting from the corners
of rooms with mirrors,
standing orders and judicial wigs

I watch her on horseback in the unpolluted field,
where my clot of thoughts
do not obtain their promised words

Pictures in my mind become
falling distant objects;
Time is down as she rides by,
her newly broken horse
a high-born, kingly creature,
whose stance under burden
proclaims reincarnation

Even in these notes
there is something of the reinvented horse;
a transformed air,
charged with spirits and mayflies

And as far out as the edge of sense
such weights and measures break us,

Yet this furlong of light
is where we belong:

An acre of space
with a memory horse
loose in the unfenced heart

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