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This poem is taken from PN Review 76, Volume 17 Number 2, November - December 1990.

Brazil Bill Manhire

1.
All night Brazil approached you through the dark.
The light behind mountains
was the light in the silver-merchant's eyes
two villages down river, was the blade
his father's father gave him, years ago,
to help him strike a deal with strangers.
His great right arm struck you
once, struck you twice,
because you had no money.
He watched you walk towards Brazil.

Brazil was women buying food from men,
the directions water followed.
Brazil was stars above the water-raft,
the parchment and the livestock where you slept,
and in the morning you woke and travelled on,
Brazil was where you were going.
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