• Vol. 05
  • Chapter 04
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The strange death of Jenny Joseph

When they came hammering
I was already worrying my way
over the lupine snowfield
inadequately clothed against
the heart-stopping cold
of an alpine night.

Jenny? Can you hear us!
but I had gone
where bent birches
awaited the bear breath spring;
where snow rolled on for ever.

Heaven had dropped to earth
to lie crumpled and soft
as a cot blanket.

Hello, they called, Hello?
but I was so tired -
my summer-gloved hands
scrabbling with cold -
and wearing purple in my detachment
at the margin of a mountain page
where soon I would melt,
invisible as white ink,
lost in my wide hat, satin sandals
and the weight of eighty five winters,
finding colour no remedy against darkness.