The Blue-black Sloes

THE BLUE-BLACK SLOES

The queen has made a laurel wreath

For the new champion to wear

So he will not grow old and weak

The whisper of the brittle leaves

Is of a people falling down

And of a king that cannot breathe

The blue-black sloes have gathered round,

The blackberry and scarlet hip

They twine about the king’s own crown

Inside the castle nothing moves

The guests are frozen to the walls

And spears of ice hang from the roof

The withered wreath has taken root

And pressing through the embroidered cloth

Will resurrect the warmth and doubt.

I don’t want to provide a text-book explanation of this poem, but think the seasons (autumn, winter, spring) of Britain or similar places climatically, Celtic myth and rebirth.

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