Fantasia for Woods
Green ivy creeps down crumbling walls
of rotting marble, swamps and drowns
the white acanthus: broken crowns
embossed with dark oak apple galls.
Gold motes waltz in the cool wood’s gloom,
transfixed in stillness long accrued
and pooled in lightwells; yew glades brood
where bluebells ring an empty tomb.
Shades’ fingers trace a sundial,
telling the Jacob’s ladder rungs;
butterflies sip with watchspring tongues
at muddy footpaths’ puddled bile.
Their wet pelts dripping, sleek beasts prowl
through leafshadow’s thick forest glass,
brushing dark swathes through dewy grass,
observed by the unblinking owl,
and ancient woodland’s holy grounds
hear late the flutes of twilight pine;
frosted with silver sylvanshine,
hewn trees weep jewels from their wounds.