All entries for Friday 28 September 2012

September 28, 2012

A Farewell to English

The new home of the Warwick Writing Programme

This road is not new.
I am not a maker of new things.
I cannot hew
out of the vacuumcleaner minds
the sense of serving dead kings.

I am nothing new
I am not a lonely mouth
trying to chew
a niche for culture
in the clergy-cluttered south.

But I will not see
great men go down
who walked in rags
from town to town
finding English a necessary sin
the perfect language to sell pigs in.

I have made my choice
and leave with little weeping:
I have come with meagre voice
to court the language of my people.

from 'A Farewell to English' Part Seven by Michael Hartnett


'Song'

Wasps and bees crack against the windowpanes.
Insects never learn about glass.

No more can I see through your absence.

Any stone flung in a river
Shatters the moon's reflection.

May we be reunited.

John Riley, 'Song'.

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