new zealand electronic poetry centre

David Mitchell


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poets to come
 

on hampstead heath
on hampstead heath

twelve years
after
first standing
in that green
magnificence

twelve years
of rutted
goat tracks
on
                the
                      serpentine
                              ridge

of
what will come
to be known
as the saddest
hardest
decade of the century

twelve years
of the scotch
& th bourbons
& th huguenots

& fire
                        & water
under the bridge

i amuse myself
finding exact
locations

of former
good times
amours—

time trips !

stoned
unguided tours

th sun still looks like
blake’s baby face
to me

the green / th green
star

‘ something the size of a guinea ’

that presages th host
singing holy holy holy . . .

yeah.     th sky above &
                           the earth beneath
   on hampstead heath
   on hampstead heath . . .

there
in the dales / & vales
gainsborough is snoring
& hogarth & turner
& pale cockney johnny / albion’s seed /
waiting to be born / hark !
                                   
what is this late sound breaking
on the ear ?

th city bells
from far
off

chime

& th village bells from near

it is th dead centre
of th year

midsummer’s eve—

&
i am stricken
slowly

if such a thing might be
thinking of the great
unborn

who are not here

leaning on th bells
that break

on every ear

looking on th heath
& sky

pondering those novel
bards

who were

& did

but are not here / waiting to be born
                            hark ! as on th cool
                                        romantic glow
                                        of sunset
        now
                                                                i hear
           
the sanskrit tongue of bagpipes &
                                                  the haunted gold
                                                  of one
  french horn . . .

here’s to th green ; the unborn !
th poets are coming !
( like always )

here’s to th green ! here’s to th year !
th poets are coming ! They’re almost here !

 


ęDavid Mitchell
 


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Last updated 22 February, 2010