The Mower

by Philip Larkin

The MowerThe mower stalled, twice; kneeling, I found
A hedgehog jammed up against the blades, 
Killed. It had been in the long grass.

I had seen it before, and even fed it, once.
Now I had mauled its unobtrusive world
Unmendably. Burial was no help:

Next morning I got up and it did not.
The first day after a death, the new absence
Is always the same; we should be careful

Of each other, we should be kind
While there is still time.

This poem refers to a real, sad incident in Philip Larkin’s life. The next day, while relating the story to his secretary, he burst into tears. In his will, Philip Larkin left to considerable sum of money to the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty in Animals.

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2 Comments

Filed under News, Poem

2 responses to “The Mower

  1. bill stuart

    Hi Bruce thank you for this tiny little keyhole of gentle kindness amongst what is going on in the world right now.

  2. Rosalind Russell

    Interesting, considering he isn’t known for being particularly kind or sensitive to people.

    Roz

    On 20 July 2016 at 11:55, roundhousepoetrycircle wrote:

    > herbwise posted: “by Philip Larkin The mower stalled, twice; kneeling, I > found A hedgehog jammed up against the blades, Killed. It had been in the > long grass. I had seen it before, and even fed it, once. Now I had mauled > its unobtrusive world Unmendably. Burial was no he” >

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