July 1911

On a sunlit lawn in Grantchester
Rupert Brooke, stuck for a simile,
called to Virginia Woolf,
lounging on a rug,
to ask what was the brightest thing
she could imagine.
She said “a leaf with the light on it,”
and he never asked
what is the darkest then?
Because the darkest
is the untrodden future
whether theirs, which we know,
or our own, which we do not.
28th November 2010