Mossbawn: Two Poems in Dedication by Seamus Heaney
There was a sunlit absence. The helmeted pump in the yard heated its iron, water honeyed
in the slung bucket and the sun stood like a griddle cooling against the wall
of each long afternoon. So, her hands scuffled over the bakeboard, the reddening stove
sent its plaque of heat against her where she stood in a floury apron by the window.
Now she dusts the board with a goose's wing, now sits, broad-lapped, with whitened nails
and measling shins: here is a space again, the scone rising to the tick of two clocks.
And here is love like a tinsmith's scoop sunk past its gleam in the meal-bin.
2. The Seed Cutters
They seem hundreds of years away. Brueghel, You'll know them if I can get them true. They kneel under the hedge in a half-circle Behind a windbreak wind is breaking through. They are the seed cutters. The tuck and frill Of leaf-sprout is on the seed potates Buried under that straw. With time to kill, They are taking their time. Each sharp knife goes Lazily halving each root that falls apart In the palm of the hand: a milky gleam, And, at the centre, a dark watermark. Oh, calendar customs! Under the broom Yellowing over them, compose the frieze With all of us there, our anonymities.