Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Tuesday Poem: "Weathering" by Fleur Adcock

My face catches the wind
from the snow line
and flushes with a flush
that will never wholly settle.
Well, that was a metropolitan vanity,
wanting to look young forever, to pass.
I was never a pre-Raphaelite beauty
and only pretty enough to be seen
with a man who wanted to be seen
with a passable woman.

But now that I am in love
with a place that doesn't care
how I look and if I am happy,
happy is how I look and that's all.
My hair will grow grey in any case,
my nails chip and flake,
my waist thicken, and the years
work all their usual changes.

If my face is to be weather beaten as well,
it's little enough lost
for a year among the lakes and vales
where simply to look out my window
at the high pass
makes me indifferent to mirrors
and to what my soul may wear
over its new complexion.

By Fleur Adcock

For more about the poet, Fleur Adcock, see:

I love this poem because the poet says I am what I am and as I age I no longer care about pleasing anyone but myself and it's all superficial in comparison to the beauty of the world all around us.


  1. I particularly like the close of this poem. And your brief commentary. Nice one to share.

  2. This text is the bowlderised version mispublished by Roger Housden in one of his Ten Poems anthologies. Please remove all credits and references to Fleur Adcock on this web page, since Adcock did not write the text you have presented here, or replace it with the correct text and credit it to Poems 1960-2000 by Fleur Adcock (Bloodaxe Books, 2000). You can find the correct text on this web page and can easily copy and paste it from there. Yours, Neil Astley, Editor, Bloodaxe Books

  3. Woops, I meant to write bowdlerised. We don't exactly know how this text got out there since Housden presumably didn't intentionally present this ridiculous version, possibly by someone copying down lines they remembered from a reading?

  4. Sorry, I omitted the web page for the correct text: