(Goodman Clarke)

The child had been dead a week,
and I had spent the morning stacking stones
at the west wall. Sarah lay upstairs,
eyes, tongue, all drawn to one side, legs
locked, and for the third day. At noon
I saw two women dressed in winding sheets,
with napkins on their heads, crossing
the fields hand in hand, as if floating.
Behind them trailed a black dog or pig.
At the forest's edge the creature stopped,
stood then like a man, looked back.
Its ears pricked up.