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This poem is taken from PN Review 76, Volume 17 Number 2, November - December 1990.

Four Poems P.J. Kavanagh
Four Poems

JANUARY EVENING

It is the métier and, after all, self-chosen,
To waste a day and fail to find expression
For morning's special frisk, the way brass trees
Leaped from ribbed ground, and one-side frozen
Molehills were white-breasted, like still plovers.
To know the harsh imperative to praise,
Not to placate a god that made these treasures,
Without a motive, save necessity's.

And not one word, of fear, of jubilation
At a quick, kind unveiling, no good word spoken:
Of fear, because the page bears no true mark
And light is lost. But never lost, the soul's
Necessity to praise, and hills of moles,
White-breasted, still as plovers, roost in dark.
...


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