Archive for September 10th, 2020

Thursday, 10 September 2020

Corbridge by Gillian Allnut

For my sister Elizabeth

The river full of itself, intent, contained.

A listening in the rain
as if it were everyman or woman walking alone.

The church with its Roman arch carried straight
out of Corstopitum.

The tower grounded and squat as only the Anglo-Saxon.

The vicarage forgiven, fortified
for all the border-raids remembered
in its silent thick stone –

a brooding inwardness unfit
to wear the reputation heritage we’d put upon it
to receive the wedding-guest.

By the king’s oven we wait, as women do
as women medieval would have done
for bread or for the host –

involved in the recitation of the rain

involved in the recitation of our own
the told and the untold pain.


Date: 2019

By: Gillian Allnutt (1949- )