Support 100 years of independent journalism.

  1. Culture
25 February 2016updated 27 Jul 2021 6:16am

“From my window, north: winter”, a poem by Dominic Cooper

Knuckled may lie this dark of earth. . .

By Dominic Cooper

The tiercel-gentle, so sharp and sure,
tears out from blinding coverts of the air
and flings away, chasing some shimmered hope
into the windless falls on falling blue that stand
in mass of poise upon the echo flash of sea.

His is the floating sky, his to rise into,
there among the dizzying and the silent fire:
he is the moment of our lives,
mere glimpse and passage, the fading joys,
his sunburst careless form wheeling forever
up and out of this broken, speechless world.

Knuckled may lie this dark of earth,
chill and crackled into clod and fist of rock,
flux and seed held and dozing fast. Yet always
and further, far above our pale whisperings,
our gritted hope and set of jaw, he sails. Out
beneath the blast of sun, muscled and free,
he climbs onwards into his sheer and fearsome
violent peace, driving forever into
the beating heart of life.

Dominic Cooper is a British novelist who won the Somerset Maugham Award for The Dead of Winter in 1976. He lives in the Scottish Highlands where he works as a clockmaker. (“Tiercel-gentle” is a male peregrine falcon.)

Sign up for The New Statesman’s newsletters Tick the boxes of the newsletters you would like to receive. Quick and essential guide to domestic and global politics from the New Statesman's politics team. The New Statesman’s global affairs newsletter, every Monday and Friday. The best of the New Statesman, delivered to your inbox every weekday morning. A handy, three-minute glance at the week ahead in companies, markets, regulation and investment, landing in your inbox every Monday morning. Our weekly culture newsletter – from books and art to pop culture and memes – sent every Friday. A weekly round-up of some of the best articles featured in the most recent issue of the New Statesman, sent each Saturday. A weekly dig into the New Statesman’s archive of over 100 years of stellar and influential journalism, sent each Wednesday. Sign up to receive information regarding NS events, subscription offers & product updates.
I consent to New Statesman Media Group collecting my details provided via this form in accordance with the Privacy Policy

This article appears in the 17 Feb 2016 issue of the New Statesman, A storm is coming