A poet of mythic and elemental power,
Ted Hughes' poetic vision was strongly affected by the bleak Yorkshire moorland
of his early childhood, where he developed a lifelong passion for the countryside
and wild animals. The writer was named Poet Laureate in 1984 and was widely
acclaimed for the intense images he evoked of the English countryside and
the savagery of the animal world.
the start he is dressed in his best - his blacks and his whites
Little Fauntleroy - quiffed and glossy,
A Sunday suit, a wedding natty get-up,
in dunged straw
beams, near the mud wall,
of him legs,
Shining-eyed, requiring nothing more
But that mother's milk come back often.
else is in order, just as it is.
Let the summer skies hold off, for the moment.
This is just as he wants it.
A little at a time, of each new thing, is best.
Too much and
too sudden is too frightening -
When I block the light, a bulk from space,
To let him in to his mother for a suck,
He bolts a yard or two, then freezes,
every hair in all directions,
Ready for the worst, shut up in his hopeful religion,
A little syllogism
With a wet blue-reddish muzzle, for God's thumb.
You see all
his hopes bustling
As he reaches between the worn rails towards
The topheavy oven of his mother.
He trembles to grow, stretching his curl-tip tongue -
What did cattle
ever find here
To make this dear little fellow
So eager to prepare himself?
He is already in the race, and quivering to win -
His new purpled
In the elbowing push of his plans.
Hungry people are getting hungrier,
Butchers developing expertise and markets,
But he just wobbles his tail - and glistens
Within his dapper profile
Unaware of how his whole lineage
Has been tied up.
for feel of the world licking his side.
He is like an ember - one glow
Of lighting himself up
With the fuel of himself, breathing and brightening.
Soon he'll plunge out, to scatter his seething joy,
To be present at the grass,
To be free on the surface of such a wideness,
To find himself himself. To stand. To moo.
Copyright: Ted Hughes