Penelope Shuttle (two poems)

Swallows

The sea has everything and nothing on its blue mind
as it strokes The Lizard’s tail. The sea has a hill full of
lighthouses,
a lifeboat sleeved in every cove. The sea never tries to be
different,
turns its tides one by one, blue and green, green and blue.

Swallows teem above the cliff, squeaking, cheeping, flitting.
They dip down to the salt as if to cormorant-dive, then
scoot right up into high blue.
But the sea goes along in its furrows, content with the
magic of water,
while the birds keep all the magic of air.

Faster than sight or sorrow, the swallows clip the sky,
remembering Saint Wynwallow when she was garmented
in feathers and air.

 

Ann Boleyn’s Music Book

Maid of honours, her book has forty two songs
writ in an English hand, but not her final singing
O Death rock me asleep

I will give you pleasure dear sang Ann
perhaps to more than one man, perhaps
O Death rock me asleep

Mistresse A Bolleyne loved de Sermisy
and Josquin, love songs and prayers
O Death rock me asleep

Flirt’s scrapbook for singing the hours?
A scholar’s Missa plurium modulorum?
O Death rock me asleep

Lute and harp, falcon and pomegranate
Jouyssance vous donneray, she sang
O Death rock me asleep

for Sylvia Miles

Penelope Shuttle lives in Cornwall. She is a founder member and now President of the Falmouth Poetry Group, and a Festival Committee member for their Cornwall Contemporary Poetry Festival. She was also the judge for the Torbay Open Poetry Competition in 2017.

Penny is reading her poems at this year’s
Torbay Poetry Festival, on Sunday,October
22nd. 3.30 – 4.00pm.  She is also presenting
the winners of the Competition with their
prizes and certificates on Saturday 21st
October 4.30 – 5.30pm.