What do I have to report?
He hands off his rucksack
                as we exit the elevator
and plucks the key from my hand
to take off at a clip down the corridor
swerving now
                and then out of sheer joy.
Even the way he eats I kind of find
                fascinating, chewing with a camel’s
abstraction and giving his sister
the side-eye. I watch him as a lover
or as a mother might. He’s as excited
                about my pasta and pesto
and grated cheddar cheese I’ve just
cut the mould off as he is about
Christmas, and if he seems to have sprung
from himself sometimes, other times
I watch him sit beside me in the pew,
bending his fingers back against the wood
as I used to do, and all attention to ceremony,
incantation, response, incense rising
in great drifts, dissolving, his
seriousness returned – and I think
here I go through but why if not
to testify against eternity and he
kneels beside me now as I kneel
here now beside him and talk to you

Night Sky in Tyrone

Maybe birds provide the eyes the dead look out of.
Or is it knots in furniture they queue up at

to spy from, bickering, whispering with shock
how grey her hair is now, how skinny he has got.

My sister thinks that portly robin on the lawn
is Dad come back to say hello, and he takes a little hop

out of sunlight into shade before alighting on
the compost bag and lengthily explaining everything

that we can see is his, his apple tree, his grass,
that patch of rhubarb he’d been about to cut back.

Why not. We finish up a bottle then another
and the evening’s coming on, and then the night is here,

and we sit out underneath so much made known
that’s always there – the depths of emptiness and fire.

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