Robert Nisbet, “Pilgrimage”

orange line


In love in the gently respectful way
some people have, they’d wake, each holiday,
in London (they’d no children of their own,
just nephews calling on Christmas Day),

and they’d drive on Boxing Day, two hundred miles
and more, to the headland they’d known
in youth, youth with all there’d been, the cliff top,
and the surge, the roar, of the Irish Sea

in their faces, their hearts, rushing to
the fraught part of them that had known
London and routine, had stayed gracious, kind,
but now wanted that gulping of Atlantic air

each Boxing Day, the hugeness, wildness,
the clung-to nonsuburban things, a faith,
a reassurance. And then, at dusk,
the calm, slow-breathing, long drive home.


Robert Nisbet is a Welsh poet who has over two hundred publications in Britain and around forty in the United States. His one chapbook is Merlin’s Lane (Prolebooks, 2011).


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