Entry - MAG Poetry Prize 2010

A Bend in the Road

by Rachel Irven

I am driving home.
Thoughts ranging over a busy day
Comfortable in my world.
Outside my cocoon, headlights pierce the darkness,
My evening spooling out in front of me.
Suddenly, a bend in the road.
And dazzled by an oncoming car,
Instinct alone makes me brake.
A flicker of movement in the dark,
Then against the headlights I see
Deer, maybe four or five,
Delicately picking their way across the road
Taking their time.

They move slowly, gracefully,
Do not look at me, do not consider me.
The world stops for a few seconds
My engine cools and ticks.
The stag’s eye catches the light as he turns
Antlers silhouetted,
Looks straight in my direction.
Then as suddenly as they were here
They are gone into the darkness.

I restart my engine
Slowly pull away.

Added: 15.03.2010

Judges' comments on this poem


More lines like the vivid, beautiful "My evening spooling out in front of me" would really take this poem up to the next level.