Percival comes. If I pretend he is not here
He grows larger in the barn, filling all the shadows,
And then I cannot go in to feed the cows

And I hear those who give milk crying for milk
And I see their hearts, like children’s palms,
Opening and closing in the garden. Even in winter

I keep the garden. And Percival, who never looks
At flowers, taps his fingers on the water
That has frozen in buckets in the barn.

I hear that tapping. Even as I heard him coming,
Last night through my sleep, through the snow,
His heavy black coat dropping like wings.

Brigit Pegeen Kelly

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