It was possible to laugh

As the engines whistled to the boil,


And wonder what the clouds looked like –

Shoveled snow, Apple Charlotte,


Tufty Tails … I enjoyed

The Irish Sea, the ships were faults


In a dark expanse of linen.

And then Belfast below, a radio


With its back ripped off,

Among the agricultural abstract


Of the fields. Intricate,

Neat and orderly. The windows


Gleamed like drops of solder –

Everything was wired up.


I thought of wedding presents,

White tea things


Grouped on a dresser,

As we entered the cloud


And were nowhere-

A bride in a veil, laughing


At the sense of event, only

Half afraid of an empty house


With its curtain boiling

From the bedroom window.