The Spike Golden Jubilee Number May 1949
There can be no birth under this sky,
The clear blue sky whose cold air
Cuts the remote hill from the harbour,
Defines the cabbage-tree
Portrays the willow as a simple silhouette.
It is not in this sky's power
To make the sap rise—
The sky knows nothing;
The sterile sky cannot create one leaf,
The sky cannot create one flower.
It is not here
That the trees and hills are linked
Beneath the drifting smoke of summer.
Or where the cold hard sand upon the endless beaches
Is warmed and sifted
And a thousand worlds run into one;
Not here does the mirage appear
Upon the scrubby plain,
Nor the quivering air take form above the land.
There can be no birth
Under the breath of the dismissing sun,
There can be no birth beneath this sky.
Meeting in Autumn
I have been waiting long
In this place,
As still myself as the buildings
And the bare tree opposite
Grey in the falling rain.
Only my mind
Moves out among the lifeless,
Crosses the street—
I hear the splashing of my footsteps
Sounding by the distant walls.
And still the rain drips,
Drips from the walls and from the trees,
Streams down the gutters
And down the far off mountain side.
Here where all is washed by rain
The memories of yesterday
One with tomorrow's images,
Flow past my feet,
Flow past my ebbing self.
And so why is it when you come
I return again into my narrow doorway,
And shaking off the drops of rain,
Inquire why you are late?