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This poem is taken from Poetry Nation 1 Number 1, 1973.

Talismans Peter Scupham
TALISMANS

I. Christmas Lantern

Such flim-flam: a hutch of crumbling card
And the light's composure. Still Talisman,

I think of nights your lucencies beguiled,
While the house rocked to the soft, blundering guns.

I set my heart upon your heraldries,
Where snow lies faultless to a cobalt sky,

Counting your shaken stars, adrift on paths
Diminishing among your vivid pines.

Frail monstrance, with an old anticipation
I set you here above my sleeping children.

The branched reindeer at the huddled bridge,
The simple house, offering her candled windows:

For their eyes now, your most immaculate landscape
And all the coloured rituals of love.
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