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An Afternoon Quiet

by Knute Skinner

An afternoon quiet
fell on the room.
I sat there composed.
I would swear the clock on the mantle
suspended its motions
for that moment my lungs and heart
paused as it were.
Nothing at all happened,
nothing at all.

You can look in that room today
if you've half a mind to.
You can sit in the chair I sat in.
You can wind the clock.
You can raise and lower the blinds
that confront the seasons.
You can sit in the chair I sat in.
You can tell me that nothing happened,
nothing at all.


Taken from An Afternoon Quiet and Other Poems, Pudding House Publications, 1998.

Knute Skinner: Selected Poems

The Cold Irish Earth