The Three Day Festival – a poem by Clive Donovan


They are finally slumped and out of it
in what used roughly to be a circle;
the tired drummers, the flute-shooters and the last of the
gourd shakers dropped off, sighing and snoring...

around the hard-stamped ground, in the middle of which I am,
progressing slowly the dance that must never cease
at this festival of continuous celebration.
All day there were dozens taking part

and firecrackers and stews and kissing.
There were balloons and goats and climbing ropes
and this dance that must never stop, by custom.
And now the pulse is mine, I hold the tribe

in hands that would wrench down a purple sky,
enveloping my people. And my heels pause.
My hips stop. My heart and breath become the dance. Look!
It is all mine – armfuls of lives, precious, asleep.

Oh tiny hours! Steered by the stars!
Remember me like this if you can.
A finger of dawn. As dreams become thin,
A slip of a child stirs, starts clapping.

Clive Donovan devotes himself full-time to poetry and has published in a wide variety of magazines including The Journal, Agenda, Acumen, Poetry Salzburg Review, Prole, Sentinel Literary Quarterly and Stand. He lives in the creative atmosphere of Totnes in Devon, U.K. often walking along the River Dart for inspiration. He is hoping to entice a publisher to print a first collection. 

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