An Almost Dancer

I’m having one of my poetry binges. I found this one on the TLS website, it was one of their poems of the week, and, for reasons that will be obvious to those who read the Skylarks blog, I instantly copied it to paste into this post. Ha ha! It’s by Robert Nye and he wrote it in 2010. I think I’ll read some more of his stuff as I lie on Tempelhofer Feld this weekend—that is, if I am ever able to prise myself away from the computer screen.

Once, on a hill in Wales, one summer’s day

I almost danced for what I thought was joy.

An hour or more I’d lain there on my back
Watching the clouds as I gazed dreaming up.

As I lay there I heard a skylark sing
A song so sweet it touched the edge of pain.

I dreamt my hair was one with all the leaves
And that my legs sent shoots into the earth.

Laughing awake, I lay there in the sun
And knew that there was nothing to be known.

Small wonder then that when I stood upright
I felt like dancing. Oh, I almost danced,

I almost danced for joy, I almost did.
But some do not, and there’s an end of it.

One night no doubt I shall lie down for good
And when I do perhaps I’ll dance at last.

Meanwhile I keep this memory of that day
I was an almost dancer, once, in Wales.

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