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Lay for the Day
31st October

1795: John Keats is born in London.
The poem takes its title from a line in his ‘Bright star’ sonnet.

Awake for Ever

I am what the trees diagram.
I am as the rain illustrates on the window.

Cold wind scatters me
from hills to the sea
along the scattering mist.
Fells outgrow their walls,
empty, unexplained row of houses,
the coarse thistled pasture.
Outside holds no promises.
The outside blows and rains
against the house.

So we wake together with the rain
floating against the window.
So we wander from bed
and watch the trees mobile,
sky tense with cloud.
There is only the day and then the night
and the uncertain weather.
So we waver, looking at the day.
So I say,

You are what the trees diagram.
You are as the rain.

John Gibbens
from Makings ’77-’83

The Lay Reader: an archive of the poetic calendar