An Ordinary Signal Drop: Second Pale Knight

Posted by ractrose on 24 Mar 2019 in Art, Poems

Charcoal and pastel drawing of half-skull half-flesh head



The Folly

The Legend of the Pale Knight





An Ordinary Signal Drop


It impressed me, acquainted me, the unspeakable

more normality than horror at a glance

shivering loose, like flakes of plated gilding

painted over with a garden scene

Shoes, parasol, a hand suspended

holding still its cup of tea

A man, crawling at the last, hurricane winds

Driving him onto knees, and stretching fingertips

at terrifying risk, bowed low and groping to the lopped edge

needing this spray of water in his face

the moon’s emerging, laying of its light

masked by clouds, then startlingly uncurtained

To believe it, that he saw it


Mr. Dunlow, my father’s ancient valet

was servant to a surgeon of Dundee

going out in any case, to lance a boil, or some such

thing, Dunlow not needed, but the gale’d come up strong again

that evening, that was how he told it, he had just

stepped out to see his master off

and eye the weather for himself


It was Mr. Roberts’s story Dunlow told

But had it at second-hand first-hand if you understand me

The feather-tip descends to shelter hope

For a moment the signal lingers in midair


The train has gone at seven-fourteen




Pale Knight
Photo black leaves and eyeGodfrey: Third Pale Knight













(2017, Stephanie Foster)




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