CRICKET
    Meditations on retirement

Sixty years in one house.
You wouldn't think you'd overlook a room.
But last year from a kitchen niche
beside the hearth
I moved away the sticks and brooms
into a pantry place,
swept the spiders out,
and for some season now...
when no one sees...
I contemplate this nook.

Last week
in a storeroom,
in the barn,
I found a tiny chair,
more stool than chair,
a boy's for milking maybe.
It just should fit.

From here
the kitchen stirrings
may silently be seen,
scraps from platters fallen snitched,
and orts of gossip heard...
enough to feed a stirless soul.

Little by little
I now will man this post until,
quite unmanned
in my chimney-corner,
I come to rest.

And there at night,
warmed by dying embers on the hob,
no one need heed
the tiny,
chirping,
crepitations
of the cricket
in his cranny.