Always, or nearly always, on old apple trees,
Somewhere around Christmas, if you look up through the forest,
You will see, fat as a bullfinch, stuck on a high branch,
One lingering, bald, self-sufficient, hard, blunt fruit.
There will be no leaves, you can be sure of that;
The twigs will be tar black, and the white sky
Will be grabbed among the branches like thumbed glass
In broken triangles just saved from crashing to the ground.
Further up, dribbles of rain will run down
Like spilt colourless varnish on a canvas. The old tins,
Tyres, cardboard boxes, debris of back gardens,
Will lie around bleak, with mould and rust creeping over them.
Blow on your fingers. Wipe your feet on the mat by the back door.
You will never see that apple fall. Look at the cat,
Her whiskers twitch as she sleeps by the kitchen fire;
In her back-yard prowling dream she thinks it's a bird.
by John Smith
It has rained heavily all night and most of today.