This was not found in some attic but down
at rock bottom, like things left after
a modern death, limp neglected tat
in the hands of the heir, myself, collector.
It is not a desire for something higher that drives me
into the depths: it is little and insolent, picking up clothes
not worth the dustman’s while – turned into uneven
paving, rain-stained – to know what it was like.
It is scrabbling, in pursuit of the vanishing,
the people of the past, shards of thought,
sequences which led to action – planing wood,
snipping out small clothes – moments,
long ago, which really were and were really
vanished till someone grasps them, reads them back.