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This poem is taken from PN Review 62, Volume 14 Number 6, July - August 1988.

Poems John Cameron Burnside

'That moment during fever'

That moment during fever
when bodies leave their beds
and walk away along a yellow road.

Everything familiar: dust and stones,
fields of grass, the distance
smudged with pines.

The colours drawn from memory
perhaps; the birdsong
carried from the dark of curtained rooms,

but this is always here:
empty road; a shiver in the grass;
walking shadow; distance smudged with rain.


Slow rain, black as pepper,
sprinkled on the windows.

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