Invasion On The Farm by R. S. Thomas

I am Prytherch. Forgive me. I don’t know

What you  are talking about; your thoughts flow

Too swiftly for me; I cannot dawdle

Along their banks and fish in their quick stream

With crude fingers. I am alone, exposed

In my own fields with no place to run

From your sharp eyes. I, who a moment back

Paddled in the bright grass, the old farm

Warm as a sack about me, feel the cold

Winds of the world blowing. The patching gate

You left open will never be shut again.

 

by R. S. Thomas

from Song At The Year’s Turning (1955)

Aside by R. S. Thomas

Take heart, Prytherch.

Over you the planets stand,

And have seen more ills than yours.

This canker was in the bone

Before man bent to his image

In the pool’s glass. Violence has been

And will be again. Between better

And worse is no bad place

 

For a labourer, whose lot is to seem

Stationary in traffic so fast.

Turn aside, I said; do not turn back.

There is no forward and no back

In the fields, only the year’s two

Solstices, and patience between.

 

by R. S. Thomas

from Pieta (1966)