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This poem is taken from PN Review 55, Volume 13 Number 5, May - June 1987.

When Bounty is Down to Persimmons and Lemons Les A. Murray
 
In May, Mary's month
when snakes go to sleep,
sunlight and shade lengthen,
forest grows deep,

wood coughs at the axe
and splinters hurt worse,
barbed wire pulls through
every post in reverse,

old horses grow shaggy
and flies hunker down
on curtains, like sequins
on a dead girl's ball gown.

Grey soldier-birds arrive
in flickers of speed
to hang upside down
from a quivering weed

or tremble trees' foliage
...


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