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This poem is taken from PN Review 121, Volume 24 Number 5, May - June 1998.

Two Poems Robert Nye

Margaretting

As a boy I dreamt of a place called Margaretting.
In my mind it was a village of seven streets,
With a lake perhaps, some swans, and a white church
Where bells rang not just on Sundays, and a grocer's
Selling ginger beer and custard pies with nutmeg.

I had seen the name on a map of darkest Essex
And the sound of it pleased me as much as Thundersley
    Glen.
Margaretting: the present participle maybe
Of the verb to margaret, meaning to behave
Or be like the girl who sat next to me in class.

I considered her the quintessence of all things fair
As well as wise and true. Where we made pictures
She had her men lean in the wind when walking
While my men walked upright and looked like art.
I knew then that the devil was a woman.
...


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