Column 30

Sometimes a poem just takes off, which is what happens in this remarkable, muscular poem by Myra Schneider. A grand diction combined with wonderful physical detail (‘…earth that’s rich/ with squirming worms’), it’s a poem about inspiration that also provides it; a poem for our times. It’s from Myra’s latest collection ‘lifting the sky‘, published by Ward Wood Publishing. To find out more about Myra, visit her website at www.myraschneider.co.uk.

I Pegasus

lift my hooves for gallop,
rise as my white wings open.
Wind rushes into my pricked ears.
Excitement whinnies from my mouth,
ripples through my flanks, drives me
towards a place that’s always cloudless.
Below me are snow-spattered peaks,
valleys where rivers wander, where trees
are laden with oranges, small suns
which pay homage to the sphere above.
Below me are huge cities with domes,
spires and innumerable buildings,
the tallest invade the blue of sky.
I miss nothing: the glassy stare
of cars stampeding like maddened cattle,
humans fleeing from burning towns,
forests felled like mighty armies,
the sea hurling itself in fury
at the land, barren fields thirsting
for water, skeletons of starved creatures.
I choose a verdant slope when I land,
hoof its milky grass and a spring
bubbles up from earth that’s rich
with squirming worms. Then I rejoice
for I am the breath in and the breath out,
I am the quickening which comes unbidden
to the mind, blossoms into words
that tug the heart, I am sounds which bell
the air and enthral the ear, shapes
and colours which come together
to sing. I counter hatred, destruction.
I will not be stamped out.

 

Used with kind permission of Myra Schneider and Ward Wood Publishing.