Here is another poem from my Sunbury Poetry Group last Thursday. Pilip Larkin observes two racehorses in retirement and imagines their former racing careers. Now the stresses of their days of glory have gone and they are happy, free to graze in peace.
Perhaps there is also a metaphor here for all of us who are 'getting on a bit". Have we been put out to grass?
The eye can hardly pick them out
From the cold shade they shelter in,
Till wind distresses tail and main;
Then one crops grass, and moves about -
The other seeming to look on -
And stands anonymous again
Yet fifteen years ago, perhaps
Two dozen distances surficed
To fable them : faint afternoons
Of Cups and Stakes and Handicaps,
Whereby their names were artificed
To inlay faded, classic Junes -
Silks at the start : against the sky
Numbers and parasols : outside,
Squadrons of empty cars, and heat,
And littered grass : then the long cry
Hanging unhushed till it subside
To stop-press columns on the street.
Do memories plague their ears like flies?
They shake their heads.
Dusk brims the shadows.
Summer by summer all stole away,
The starting-gates, the crowd and cries -
All but the unmolesting meadows.
Almanacked, their names live; they
Have slipped their names, and stand at ease,
Or gallop for what must be joy,
And not a fieldglass sees them home,
Or curious stop-watch prophesies :
Only the grooms, and the grooms boy,
With bridles in the evening come.