r2vyln3rdioj14u-rld0ska where mountains meet the sea: Woman and Deer

Woman and Deer

He does not know what she holds for him.
She doesn't know what he brings.
But they have stood now long enough
Watching each other's landscape
From the window, from the hill,
To recognise the change that's taken place -
Something that has crossed between them,
A bar of light, or shadow,
Light and shadow, beam succeeding gloom
As light and shadow pass across a forest floor
Or firelight dances on the ceiling of a room.

The cold has brought him down, and loneliness,
And fear, and another instinct that is somehow
More than natural: as if from a common dream
The two of them had learned to reach
For what they expected least but most desired -
To touch a side of nature beyond fear;
As if in the half-light there's a half-remembered truth -
Of a woman's hand outstretched and cupping
A tentatively probing mouth.

She waits there for him, with her arm, her hand,
Her offer tilted from the curve of her breast.
He sidesteps, sniffs, angles his head, retreats,
Advances, all the nerves and hot-breathed senses
Of his nose and mouth alive; his searching eyes,
The shudder of his delicate approach -
All this is a gift to her for the sweetness
In her palm. And she has reached this moment quite alone,
To be with him, and feels her body drenched
In light and shadow to the bone.

Flesh upon flesh. He dips into her hand.
She marvels at the warm wet beauty of that fit,
And now it is with a familiar grace.
Slowly, so as not to startle him,
She lifts her other hand to touch his face.


Louvregirl said...

Beautiful. I am in love with the deer that come onto our property! They will not come close...however.

Shirlwin said...

Such a beautiful poem!
Lizzy, I went to school with a girl who married a 'Deep Freeze' guy from the US, though a few years after your Dad's time in Christchurch. She came back to our home town at the time of the death of her Mum, and we all had morning tea at another friend's place ... and listened to her new accent!
Maybe one day you will get to visit NZ ... I went back last year for 3 weeks to catch up with family and friends.

Shirlwin said...

Forgot when here a moment ago ... must be an AGE thing!
The quote by HV Morton on your home page ... I have recollections of a Harry Morton, who I think was at Otago University, a Professor, who wrote a book about Scotland to NZ ... same person?

Ian said...

Gorgeous poem - it paints such a vivid picture in the mind


Julie@beingRUBY said...

Dear Lizzie
What a beautiful poem.. truly captures the quietness and anticipation of the moment.. and that photo!!!! fantastic... who is the sweeter.... the child or the dear?
Have a lovely week my friend.. xxx Julie

abby said...

beautiful poem and love the photo - so natural. getting warmer your end of the world? Shetland still has a cool breeze.. but the mirrie dancers the other night...a sight to behold!x

ER said...

Oops, my comments didn't post. I'm glad you all enjoyed this poem, it's one of my favourites. My dear friend sent me the photo a few years ago. A beautiful image of innocence and trust captured here. I always think of this poem when i see it.

Shirley, it's a small world getting smaller. My Dad was recently invited to the 60th reunion. He couldn't attend but sent on his photos and recollections of those wonderful months in NZ and Antarctica. They are now a feature of the 63rd Troop Carrier Wing's website and will be included in the reunion book and sent to the American War Museum.

Shirley, the quote was written by Henry Vollam Morton, a prolific travel writer from England. I could find no reference to his having traveled down under. Mainly, the British Isles, the Holy Land, Egypt, etc.