In the last knockings of the evening sun
Eve drinks Calvados. Elsewhere in her life
She has played muse and mistress, bitch and wife.
Now all that gunpoint gamesmanship is done.
She loves the garden at this time of day.
Raising her third glass up to God, she grins;
If this is her come-uppance for her sins
It’s worth a little angst along the way.
A fourth. Again the cork’s slow squeaky kiss.
If, as the liquor tempts her to believe,
The Lord has one more Adam up His sleeve
He’s going to have to take her as she is—
Out in the garden in a dressing-gown
Breathing old apples as the sun goes down.
Here is a very entertaining sonnet from Ann Drysdale. We were looking at poetry from Wales at a U3A session and a member brought in this poem. Ann Drysdale is now living in Wales but previously spent much of her life in north Yorkshire.
Last knockings = the final stages of something … it is not just the evening sun as we will see later in the poem – a very apt choice of words
Calvados = an apple brandy from France – again later in the poem we will see how apt it is that it is apple brandy – Eve being connected with apple and seducing.
And Eve has obviously led quite an abundant life in a number of relationships including wife and mistress – but all that ‘gunshot gamesmanship’ is over – to me this implies a lack of effort now due to current circumstances – a feeling that she can’t be bothered in making the play of previous years.
She is in the garden by herself, apart of course from the gin bottle – raising her third glass she grins – well how can she do otherwise after drinking gin – and she contemplates her sins and thinks if this is the outcome it’s not too bad – it’s Ok to sin if this is all that happens, but of course there is the downside that she is alone and needs someone.
The fourth gin gives new hope that perhaps there is another Adam to be caught (looking hopefully to God who has supplied previous opportunities) – I love the ‘squeaky kiss’ of the cork bottle – but she lets a future Adam now that she is to be taken as she is, undressed – well apart from her dressing gown and breathing old apples … the wounds of past relationships … and you have the distinct feeling she is not what you might call a fresh young pippin – not new fruit!
What a wonderful witty entertaining poem with such well-chosen words.