for Sarah Davis
by Dick Davis
The portrait of the princess lies
In scattered fragments on the floor;
Crouched over them a young girl tries
Edges that would not fit before,
That sulk recalcitrant . . . ah there
Two pieces kiss: a greyish mass
That could be clouds or that patch where
Her dress half hides the shadowed grass.
The afternoon wears on: she sifts
And sorts; a piece is placed, withdrawn;
She sits up suddenly and lifts
Impatient arms. A stifled yawn.
And stoops again. Here no one wins,
It is a world you make and enter.
The edge is finished – now begins
The serious business of the center.
A face emerges and young hands
Lie loose against grey silk; the eyes
Are guileless: almost there, she stands
Bent slightly forward in surprise.