For this week’s Friday Poem we have ‘In September’ by John Ormond, from his Collected Poems, edited by Rian Evans. The poem was written for Glenys in celebration of their wedding anniversary, which fell on the 21st September. Since the two were married in 1946, that would have been 70 years ago.
Penned late on the night of the 20th of September, probably 1970, because he’d forgotten to buy a card, it was deemed by them both to be infinitely preferable. Memories of key moments in their courtship are woven into the lines, while the storm door was the big black outer door of their home in Conway Road. The poem appeared in various anthologies: one which pleased Ormond was the Almanacco internazionale dei Poeti 1975 (La Pergola Edizioni) containing the Italian translation ‘In Settembre’ by the eminent translator, poet and critic Roberto Sanesi.
Again the golden month, still
Favourite, is renewed;
Once more I’d wind it in a ring
About your finger, pledge myself
Again, my love, my shelter,
My good roof over me,
My strong wall against winter.
Be bread upon my table still
And red wine in my glass; be fire
Upon my hearth. Continue,
My true storm door, continue
To be sweet lock to my key;
Be wife to me, remain
The soft silk on my bed.
Be morning to my pillow,
Multiply my joy. Be my rare coin
For counting, my luck, my
Granary, my promising fair
Sky, my star, the meaning
Of my journey. Be, this year too,
My twelve months long desire.
John Ormond: Collected Poems draws together all of Ormond’s work, including unpublished material. It includes notes and commentary of the poems, and a bibliography of Ormond’s prose writing, films and writing about him. An index of titles and first lines completes this essential book.
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