The Snowman
There he stood On Croghan Hill The snowman, With cow-shut eyes And withered stem of ragworth grin That laughed with children Where the battle raged, In snowball fury. The first white Christmas seen For thirty years, His thirty minute lifetime shared, And we were loathe to leave Our buttoned friend, His back to Derrygreenagh where the hare tracks crossed, And recrossed Where patch of grass might be, And prowling fox was hungry. The sharp report That cracked the dusk in two Told where the pheasant fell. The Christmas truce did not extend To nature. We had seen his prints before, Pre-Christian Imprimatur on the snow While children's laugh Re-echoed on the hillside, And melted With the snowman.