Saturday, August 02, 2014

The Mower

The mower stalled, twice; kneeling, I found   
A hedgehog jammed up against the blades,   
Killed. It had been in the long grass.

I had seen it before, and even fed it, once.   
Now I had mauled its unobtrusive world   
Unmendably. Burial was no help:

Next morning I got up and it did not.
The first day after a death, the new absence   
Is always the same; we should be careful

Of each other, we should be kind   
While there is still time.
-- Philip Larkin


Janelle said...

beautiful. poignant. true. thanks for posting. x j

Katherine C. James said...

One of my favorite poems. It is an acknowledgement of the often messy, sudden, finality of death. The finality of death, its before and its after, astonish me: a life, and then an instant later, no life. Even with an expected death, the absence is a surprise. I love Larkin's spare, direct style, and his conclusion.

we should be careful

Of each other, we should be kind
While there is still time