Harry’s Eyes – Bill Jenkinson

Bill Jenkinson Oxford Stanza Two

Bill Jenkinson
Oxford Stanza Two

“Every detail in the spectrum of an element can therefore be predicted from the spectra of its neighbours” Henry Gwyn Jeffreys Moseley, Physicist, 1877-1915

Harry’s Eyes

We see them still in photographs,
his grey eyes, gazing out,
while Harry stands in a converted shed
relaxing with apparatus, or sits at a desk
reading weighty tomes – which
were not, admittedly, quite his thing –
he preferred the ruffian world
of click and hum, the effort
to get things working: the gear
would tell him what was going on.

His eyes, two x-ray guns, pierced matter
to the core, cutting atoms like
diamonds cut glass; his eyes were hands:
watch them fettle singular machines
antiques of science, see them
construct a ladder of the elements and
locate the missing rungs
which others inserted after him
just as he had predicted.

© Bill Jenkinson, October 2015

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