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Readers are asked to send a note of any misprints or mistakes that they spot in this poem to editor@pnreview.co.uk

This poem is taken from PN Review 173, Volume 33 Number 3, January - February 2007.

Open the Paper Window Richard Price

Open the paper window -
there's whisky, repatriated from duty-free.

A little ankle bracelet -
Mhairi where are you now?

A crouching platoon, months under the double bed,
a lick-down mine.

Open the paper window - snow!
the only white Christmas -
four brothers - wool bales - piled low on the hurtling
sledge.

Scaletrix. A red car, a green car -
they're from my father to my father.
We were just intermediaries.

It seems repetitive to mention the train set,
but later you could hide hash in the papier-maché tunnel.

Open the window. It counts against me
I can remember not a single present my mother received.

Open the window - a bit of peace and quiet from you shower
or there'll be no Christmas this year!

Open the window - a tangerine,
miraculous, the orange for learners.
A tall candle, E-type red, has melted the pewter candlestick.
There's a brown-and-green black-and-white tv,
call it television please.

Bells and mirrors for a baby thirty-five years ago.
Bells and mirrors for a baby ten years ago.

Thomas Hardy, cheer us up!

Open the paper window -
Mum and Dad are going to Midnight Mass.
(You're in trouble - you were seen enjoying yourself
at Midnight Mass.)

How does Father Christmas fill the stocking?
We stayed awake as long as we could!

Open the window -
glowing pastels.

Open the window -
tinsel.

Open the window.
Try not to electrocute yourself this time! They aren't sweeties!

Black bags of exhausted wrapping.
She definitely said batteries included.

For the nineteenth time you're not getting a gun
for bloody Christmas!

Open the window.
Too much brandy butter.

Open the window, the last paper window
(it's quiet here, under the tree) -

the present: abstract, perfect,
waiting to be opened.

This poem is taken from PN Review 173, Volume 33 Number 3, January - February 2007.



Readers are asked to send a note of any misprints or mistakes that they spot in this poem to editor@pnreview.co.uk
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