This month we were inspired by poems about foxes from Ted Hughes, Alice Oswald and R Williams Parry (below) .
The first fox over the line was Alison’s – such a quick brown fox that it out-foxed us by arriving early and going to ground, as foxes do, before popping up again!
This was followed by Rachel’s foxy fellow inspired by the Welsh poem Y Llwynog by R Williams Parry. And next was Trish’s carefree fox dashing through the undergrowth!
Y Llwynog – R. Williams Parry
Ganllath o gopa’r mynydd, pan oedd clych
Eglwysi’r llethrau’n gwahodd tua’r llan,
Ac annrheuliedig haul Gorffennaf gwych
Yn gwahodd tua’r mynydd, – yn y fan,
Ar ddiarwybod droed a distaw duth,
Llwybreiddiodd ei ryfeddod prin o’n blaen
Ninnau heb ysgog ac heb ynom chwyth
Barlyswyd ennyd; megis trindod faen
Y safem, pan ar ganol diofal gam
Syfrdan y safodd yntau, ac uwchlaw
Ei untroed oediog dwy sefydlog fflam
Ei lygaid arnom. Yna heb frys na braw
Llithrodd ei flewyn cringoch dros y grib;
Digwyddodd, darfu, megis seren wîb.
The Fox – R Williams Parry
One hundred yards from the top of the mountain, when the peal
Of the churches on the slopes were inviting us towards them,
And the unspent sun of glorious July
Inviting us towards the mountain – right there,
On an unknowing foot and quiet trot
His rare beauty wandered in front of us
We, without movement and without a breath
Were paralysed a moment, like a trinity of stones
We stood, when in the middle of an uncaring step
He too stood frozen in space, above
His one tentative foot the two steady flames
Of his eyes upon us. Then, without hurrying or panic
His red fur slid over the ridge;
It happened, it ended, like a shooting star.
Thought Fox – Ted Hughes
I imagine this midnight moment’s forest:
Something else is alive
Beside the clock’s loneliness
And this blank page where my fingers move.
Through the window I see no star:
Something more near
Though deeper within darkness
Is entering the loneliness:
Cold, delicately as the dark snow,
A fox’s nose touches twig, leaf;
Two eyes serve a movement, that now
And again now, and now, and now
Sets neat prints into the snow
Between trees, and warily a lame
Shadow lags by stump and in hollow
Of a body that is bold to come
Across clearings, an eye,
A widening deepening greenness,
Coming about its own business
Till, with a sudden sharp hot stink of fox
It enters the dark hole of the head.
The window is starless still; the clock ticks,
The page is printed.
Fox – Alice Oswald
I heard a cough
as if a thief was there
outside my sleep
a sharp intake of air
a fox in her fox-fur
the grass in her black gloves
barked at my house
just so abrupt and odd
the way she went
in the heart’s thick accent
in such serious sleepless
trespass she came
a woman with a man’s voice
but no name.