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This poem is taken from PN Review 128, Volume 25 Number 6, July - August 1999.

Four Poems Peter Bland

For Ralph Hotere

It's the uncarved block
- the one we grew out of -
but you paint it black...
black's older than white.
It's before and after.
It pushes even the stars aside.

Look how quickly it's filling up
the window with this god stuff!
Your land more than mine
yet here I am with my flint and dry grass
fanning love's spark with the dark all around...
beautiful now that it catches the light.


Short journeys now...hedgerows, small fields,
the corner shop, ponds
ripe with garbage. Close by

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