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This poem is taken from PN Review 249, Volume 46 Number 1, September - October 2019.

Four Poems Robert Selby
The first three poems are from a sequence about the poet’s late grandfather, his rural Suffolk upbringing, war service and peacetime later life.


iii. The End of the Horse Age

With history yet to give him a greater role,
he cycles many dawn miles
to work the big estates.

Lunchtime he returns for rabbit,
suet pudding; then,
draining his water in a doorway’s fallow light,
with no risk of calories dawdling to fat,
he sets out again. And so on, every day.

        The beasts he clicks his tongue at
                pedalling past
        are Suffolk Punch, built to last:
                chestnut heavies with names like ‘Pegasus’,
        bred to lack fetlock feathers
                (fine on a brewer’s or a milkman’s dray
...


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