He almost did not notice her
shadowed by the shrubbery
a goblin in the corner of the churchwarden’s garden
perhaps an apparition
sent from – where?
When he could not unhook the well-chain, then she came
and watered the garden.
She drew three buckets
barely human, lithe yet wary in the evening twilight
a piteous angel, yet to herself a devil
only asking a name in return
in all, senility took only moments to recall
but with his utterance she as a spirit seemed to vanish
in sooth, a spirit – except the drops that still bedecked the rhododendron.

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