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Francis

 

Matthew Francis
b. 1956

"Power Cut"

From "Blizzard", 2000

 

Where did the time go? The clocks went out.
Candles are busy in all the rooms.
We move from zone to zone, still sometimes
reaching for the light switch. We forget

even though we know, as when someone
dead almost comes down the stairs before
you can stop him. No, there's no one there.
Neighbours are talking in the garden

we didn't know we had so many.
Their voices crisscross, passing between
hedges, as their cats do. Did you phone?
And did they tell you what they told me?

We are alone, with only people
for company, and the various
insects that share our houses with us
and the long whiskers of web that feel

the dark and the candles' new-laid light.
There must be, there is a connection.
The torch-beams out in the substation
are jostling now, trying to find it.

© Matthew Francis
Buy Matthew Francis' poetry
at Faber & Faber

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