With his violin bow in hand, the man plays
Then stops, listens to his whispering muse.
Where others were entranced, he breaks and weighs.
His face solemn in thought; much less enthuse
Resembling a wilting flower head drooped
For all the world looks a man who’s been, duped.
He’s old, and he has passed this way before,
He knows off by heart, the music his soul-
Has sealed inside, and like green Hellebore
In winter time, his head will rise and roll
And the blood of Christ, a clap of thunder
Makes all bolt up straight in awe, and wonder.
© 2017, Mark Heathcote
The Whisper of the Muse, photograph of the portrait courtesy of University of Oxford, History of Art at Oxford University