2961 Slices
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Rebecca Goss Carcanet Press Ltd. PDF
Medium 9781847770998


John Gallas Carcanet Press Ltd. PDF

a lovely chick popped out of each shell at the Right Time.

But out of one shell popped a chick that was not lovely like all the others.

He did not have goldie feathers or glazebright wings.

He was smoky, with biiiiig saaaad eyes.

And all the other birds gawped at him, and all the little fieldchicks pecked at him.

And his little neck bled, and he couldn’t find any friends.

And at night, when all the little chicks went to snuggle under warm wings and soft love-touches, he pattered up along with them, shyly, for a sleep, to hush his poor little body and soul, but he did not get peace and soft love-touches, just smacks that made him flap-patter away.

He shivered in the shadows, droopy, staring at the nest like it was a castle in a magic meadow, and nodding off on the ladder where he perched, all afraid of Bad Animals, and softly saying,

Why don’t you love me, mum?

Ah, but on the water, while all the other clutchy-claw chicks gawped lakewards from the bushy shadows, the Ugly Chick paddled perfectly, which made the others all wonder and ashamed.

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Medium 9781847770684

XXXV (‘This fire, which burns me fiercely and consumes’)

Elizabeth Jennings Carcanet Press Ltd. PDF


This fire, which burns me fiercely and consumes,

Illuminates her face with lights that freeze;

I find a strength in two frail, graceful arms

Which move great weights though they stay motionless.

Matchless spirit! I only understand

That you, so full of life, can yet cause death,

That you, unfettered, yet can bind me with

Chains; you, my only hope, can still offend.

How can it be, my Lord, that beauty has

Such opposite effects, that harm can spring

From one who has no wish to wound or hurt?

Where is my happy life and everything

That had the power to satisfy? She is

Like sun which heats though it is cold at heart.


If the immortal longing which inspires

The thoughts of others can coax my desires,

Perhaps this longing may, in the same fashion,

Give to the tyrant lord of love compassion.

But since the heavenly ordinance disposes

A short life for the flesh, long for the soul,

Sense in itself never quite discloses

Those qualities which are invisible.

Oh then, alas, how can a love that’s chaste

(Such as burns now so strongly within me),

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Medium 9781847770974

A Poem Written Completely in the Dark: lights in water

Gallas, John Carcanet Press Ltd. PDF

A Poem Written Completely in the Dark lights in water

I zip my coat and watch the reservoir go blue. It’s cold tonight. Then grey. Then black.

Behind a nubbled, spiny hedge cars shine on and off along its sodium track – streetlamp … streetlamp … streetlamp. Clouds are lying.

I watch, open-mouthed. These lines of light, unmirrored till the water, draw and dip and – streetlamp … streetlamp … streetlamp … suddenly stand, like alcazarous pillars, liquid-bright, under the water-brim. I stand up crying.

Down there is Faeryland: a swimming, lambent city built with yellow light.

This lustred dream fills my eyes, brimming at some belief. And more: through the night, paddling over all this gleam-piled trick, come two white swans, more picture-poems than things, to get me. Should I go? Black-borne bubbles silver-slip. The world is full of troubles – pillar … pillar … pillar … Something sings.

Laughter. They are passing. Moon-bells. Quick!

I splash along the low-hedge, glow-edge track.

The swans bob and wait. The clouds lie still.

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Raggedy Man, The

James Whitcomb Riley Indiana University Press ePub

O THE RAGGEDY MAN! He works fer Pa;

An’ he’s the goodest man ever you saw!

He comes to our house every day,

An’ waters the horses, an’ feeds ’em hay;

An’ he opens the shed—an’ we all ist laugh

When he drives out our little old wobble-ly calf;

An’ nen—ef our hired girl says he can—

He milks the cow fer ’Lizabuth Ann.—

Aint he a’ awful good Raggedy Man?

Raggedy! Raggedy! Raggedy Man!

W’y, The Raggedy Man—he’s ist so good

He splits the kindlin’ an’ chops the wood;

An’ nen he spades in our garden, too,

An’ does most things ’at boys can’t do!—

He clumbed clean up in our big tree

An’ shooked a’ apple down fer me—

An’ nother’n’, too, fer ’Lizabuth Ann—

An’ nother’n’, too, fer The Raggedy Man.—

Aint he a’ awful kind Raggedy Man?

Raggedy! Raggedy! Raggedy Man!

An’ The Raggedy Man, he knows most rhymes

An’ tells ’em, ef I be good, sometimes:

Knows ’bout Giunts, an’ Griffuns, an’ Elves,

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