poem index

poet

John Montague

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poem

for Lawrence Sullivan

There are days when 
one should be able 
to pluck off one's head 
like a dented or worn 
helmet, straight from 
the nape and collarbone 
(those crackling branches!)

and place it firmly down 
in the bed of a flowing stream. 
Clear, clean, chill currents 
coursing and spuming
poem

for Elizabeth

1
Poetry is a weapon, and should be used,
though not in the crudity of violence.
It is a prayer before an unknown altar,
a spell to bless the silence.

2
There is a music beyond all this,
beyond all forms of grievance,
where anger lays its muzzle down
into the lap of silence.

3
Or
poem
for Line McKie

The light, tarred skin
of the currach rides
and receives the current, 
rolls and responds to
the harsh sea swell. 

Inside the wooden ribs
a slithering frenzy; a sheen
of black-barred silver-
green and flailing mackerel:
the iridescent hoop
of a gasping sea trout. 

As a fish gleams most