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PN Review 276
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This poem is taken from PN Review 62, Volume 14 Number 6, July - August 1988.

for Elizabeth Daryush Michael Schmidt

The long blind wall towards Oxford pebble-dashed,
Moss-blotched, veined with ivy; a gravel drive
Unraked, visited by nurses and by me
Who leaned my bicycle against a trellis,
Rang at the blank door.
                         You left the chain on,
Sprung the latch, with a 'Yes?' like a hinge being forced,
Always in dark glasses, glamorous, faded.

'When I first met you,' I said on my third visit,
'I thought you were your daughter.'
'We chose not to have children,' you said,
'And kept our youth for a time. Now we're old.'
He slept on a bed in the living-room (could hardly move -
You'd abandoned the top storey years before).
Blind to the north, to the south the house
Took in with its wide windows all of Berkshire.

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