Two Poems by Waldo Williams


A young girl this skeleton was.
She catches me by surprise every time.
A century for each year I've been alive
I'll go back to where she's from.

Peaceful lives her people lived
Winning earth's sustenance with their skill
Musing on mysteries of birth, marriage and death
Keeping the bonds of our humanity well.

Still young when they put her to curl up forever
Twelve times she had welcomed the May
And then the dark companion had her
Her voice on the mountain was no more.

Deeper there was the sky's expanse
Its blue bluer because of her
The unseen and timeless house the firmer
By her being in these hills.

Written in response to seeing the Iron Age skeleton of a young girl in the museum at Avebury.

YR EILIAD (The Instant)

You won't hear about it
In any scholar's book
The river's flow is still
And the shout of the rock
Is witness clear
To things seen by no eye
Nor heard by any ear.

A breeze between the breezes
Sun beyond the Sun
The surprise that our true home
Can so effortlessly come
To take the floor -
We know in that Instant
We inherit the Hour.