Monday, 5 March 2012

A change for you

I found this poem in amongst all the letters I was sorting through in the autumn. It's another one sent to me from my mother and fits with Friday's quote.

Black March by Stevie Smith

I have a friend
At the end 
Of the world,
His name is a breath

Of fresh air.
He is dressed in 
Grey chiffon. At least
I think it is chiffon.
It has a 
Peculiar look, like smoke.

It wraps him around
It blows out of place
It conceals him
I have not seen his face,
But I have seen his eyes, they are
As pretty and bright
As raindrops on black twigs
In March, and heard him say.

I am a breath
Of fresh air for you, a change
By and by.

Black March I call him
Because of his eyes
Being like March raindrops
On black twigs

(such a pretty time when the sky
Behind black twigs can be seen
Stretched out in one
Cambridge blue as cold as snow.)

But this friend
Whatever his new names I give him
Is an old friend. He says:

Whatever names you give me
I am
A breath of fresh air,
A change for you.

Stevie Smith


  1. What a beautiful poem and a lovely way to start the week, thank you! That really is March in a poem, isn't it?

    It makes me think of blackbirds, much in evidence here at the moment as they stake out their territorial claims.

    Helen (gallimaufry)

  2. What a lovely poem! Stevie Smith wrote one of my favourite poems (Not Waving But Drowning) and this reminds me I would really like to read more of her work.

    Have a great week x

  3. Helen - Glad it's started your week off well hope the week gets even better.
    Kirsty - Oh yes I like that poem too - it calms me if I'm feeling overworked. Please share some of your favourite poets/poems on your blog as we have some similar tastes (Wendy Cope, e.e. cummings) and I'd like to find some new favourite ones.

  4. I love this poem. Thanks so much for sharing it with us. I always think I need to read more poetry, and this is another reminder of that. A wonderful poem for the beginning of March!

    1. Sunday - Somehow there is always so much to read that poems get pushed to the bottom of the list. Glad you like this one.

  5. What a lovely poem. I find myself gravitating towards poetry when I am feeling stretched and over wrought. It is like a small breathing space.

    1. Lilac - I think you have just verbalised for me why I like poetry. Thank you it really is a space to breathe.


Ooh how lovely more stripes on the page...
Thank you for taking the time.