Canadian Poetry Online top banner link to Canadian Poetry Online home page link to University of Toronto Libraries home page

Before the Wrecker Comes

Pat Lowther
From:   Time Capsule. Polestar 1996, pp. 201.


Before the wreckers come,
Uproot the lily
From the hard angle of earth
By the house.
Crouch by the latticed understairs
Rubbish and neglect
(The sudden lightning
Of sun
On your back
Between the opening
And shutting
Of the March-blown clothesline,
Rise and fall of the swift light
Like blows.)
Here a lifetime's
Slimy soapsuds
Curdle the earth,
In this corner
Under the stairs,
But have not killed
The woodbugs
Nor the moths' pupae
Which brush your fingers
As you dig
For the round, rich root,
The lily root
Which has somehow, senselessly,
Not been killed either
But has grown every year
An astonished babyhood,
An eye-struck Easter.
Pack it among the photographs,
The silver polish,
And the last laundry
Which will not again
Lift and shutter
For the shattering sun.
Mark its container: X
Two intersecting lines,
A lattice point
Of time
And the years' seasons.

Before the wreckers come,
Carry away
The lightning-bulb of sun.



Pat Lowther's works copyright © to the Pat Lowther Estate.


Canadian Poetry Online bottom banner link to University of Toronto Libraries home page link to Digital Collections home page link to University of Toronto Library catalogue link to Canadian Poetry Online home page link to University of Toronto Libraries home page