A poem for Thursday

Last night, I had a faint fragment of a passage in my mind. I felt it more than heard it. I was sure it was about moss or heather and it must have been Irish. I pulled all my books from my shelves and flipped through them, rejecting one after another. It wasn't Yeats or Heaney, Barry or Toibín. I didn't even try Beckett; I would have know if it was him.

And the more I looked, the more the passage slipped away. And I started to wonder if I read it at all. Or if I just thought it up myself, one day walking Howth. But I was in that kind of searching mood so I started clicking around online. And then I found this. And it was perfect. This is by Liam Ó Muirthile.

What is it?
I go from room to room
around the house
looking for something,
and, to be honest, I won’t know
what it is
till I find it.

It’s not the bread tin,
nor the coarse brown flour,
nor the fine white flour,
though I take them out
and measure them on the scales
and bake a single loaf.

It’s not any book I was devouring,
if memory serves me correctly,
that I put down absent mindedly,
although I stand at the shelves
and scan the book stacks
and fall to my knees.

It’s not any missing key.
I wasn’t going out.
I didn’t leave anything on, although
I’m shuffling from room to room
scouring the whole house for something
and it’s nothing
and I’m scouring quiet sorrow.
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