Two new poems by Niall Campbell

© Racheal Da Silva Burton

 
 

    Packhorse

 

Bring on the bit and curb, the saddle,
the saddlebag; broad animal,
steady it goes for its own name
being whispered in its ear;

bring on the blankets, the slumped pack,
lovingly; weight on weight, what matters
is this whole life being dedicated,
haunch and hoof and back; bring on

the tiny passenger, the load-bags
filled with riot; oh mid-life’s beast,
it stamps, up the hill of the soul,
down the thrilled valley to the stream.

 


 


    The Disembarked

 

It’s midnight and I’m dismantling a railway,
bend by bend, straight by straight. The passengers
who shuttled all throughout the provinces
of imagined lavender and imagined wheat,
must find a place to settle for the night,

and don’t I have a certain sympathy
with those come blinking from the carriages
with nowhere to lay out – except this bed
beneath the sliding blue stars of the evening
near the warm, creaking sleepers of the heart.

 

Niall Campbell

About Niall Campbell

Niall Campbell is a poet from the Outer Hebrides of Scotland. His first book, 'Moontide', was published in 2014 and 'Noctuary', his second collection, was published by Bloodaxe in 2019. A collection in the US, 'First Nights: Poems', was published by Princeton University Press in 2017.