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This poem is taken from PN Review 122, Volume 24 Number 6, July - August 1998.

Two Poems E.A. Markham

Lines Composed to Test The Idea of Montserrat

'It's like the month of May in Andalusia'
Christopher Columbus's Journal, the Italian sailor on 'discovering' Guanahani (San Salvador) and, later, Dominica.

i

Your voices change in exile, who's to know
how you will read this line: I'll bury it
in a book for safer keeping.

The young girl on the cover, appley
and wilful, and the man from Andalusia ready
to bite into her, seems about right:
though we don't know yet he's the man from Andalusia
the point is made. I'm writing an autobiography,
was born there, grew up here, etc.
Somewhere I'll lay claim to heritage, why not Irish;
so, to get there I won't start from here, sort of thing.
Here, you see, is the wrong place. Today the US George
Washington, no longer a man on horseback but a ship
(minus slaves) steams towards the Gulf. Today -
...


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