The Jigsaw

for Sarah 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And sorts; a piece is placed, withdrawn;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.

by Dick Davis

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