TP logo

Home
| Books | Music | Events | New work | Contact & ordering


Lay for the Day
31st March


1732: the birthday of Franz Joseph Haydn. He was second of the twelve children of a wagon-maker and was born at Rohrao, near Bratislava, in what is now Slovakia. (It was Mozart who referred to him as “Papa Haydn”.)


Homing

You round the bend, the house appears –
a smoking chimney among trees,
one window which may be the one she’s at.

I click in a Haydn cassette,
climbing the gloomy rock-verged road
through fading woods to that revealing turn.

Ingenious, unfinical,
unbreakable, perennial –
dear Papa Haydn like a hedge of may

with powdered wig and earthy boots,
who asks little and gives so much.
His woodwinds chortle as I top the rise,

turning forty, doing fifty.
Soon the shortening days will leave
just the one warm beam to beckon me in.

John Gibbens
from Characters: One Life
 

The Lay Reader: an archive of the poetic calendar