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This poem is taken from PN Review 192, Volume 36 Number 4, March - April 2010.

Two Poems Mark Ford

The Snare Unbroken

A nobler subject asks th’ advent’rous song, sang
Mather Byles, then bade the Muse on soaring
Pinions rise. Goliah had to be defeated. In a secret

Haunt far removed from all the restless, glaring scenes
Of day, he communed alone, or with James Ralph
Observed the twinkling stars prepare their circuits. How

He envied Cotton Mather, who’d heard the war-whoop, and rejoiced
Over the rout of a band of roving Iroquois - lo, their Mightiest
Are quelled, Salvage and Sagamore lie overturned, and fiery


Foaming Blacks… their torsos, horridly streaked,
Their brawny flesh and prodigious bones, lay
Mouldering in some dappled forest clearing, picked clean

Eventually by crows. O citizens, let’s catch
And pluck one, or more than one, and with every ink-
Black feather write of infernal regions of despair,
...


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