Portrait of a place.
Follow the drang, the cobbles,
the scent of apples and ash.
Crooked oak door. Time-scarred floor.
Shipyard timber blackened by age.
Granite carried from farmyard and moor and
piled by hands that four hundred years
have returned to Devon soil.
There are ghosts in the stone.
The past is rising damp as the mist
on Meldon Hill. Hearts beat
in the walls of cob; the past is
listening, hushed, still,
as fiddle and drum make music
to rise with the smoke
to the roof of straw.
Weave, he said.
Ribbons of color unfolded from my fingertips. Blue
when I filled a brush with paint, gold
when I opened a library book, earth brown
when I brewed my tea and carried it to the parlor. White
when I opened the morning mail. Ribbons of silver
covered my desk, words hammered out like jewelry
to lie upon the page. Forest green
and claret red as we lay abed in the moonless dark.
Weave, he said; that's why this is called
Weaver's Cottage, didn't you know?
This is your work. To weave it together.
To weave daily life into art.
About the Author: Terri Windling is a writer, artist, and editor, and the founder of the Endicott Studio for Mythic Arts. For more information, please visit her website.
Copyright © 1999 by Terri Windling. The poem first appeared in Xanadu II, published by Tor Books. It may may not be reproduced in any form without the author’s express written permission.