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This poem is taken from PN Review 7, Volume 5 Number 3, April - June 1979.

from An East Anglian Miscellany John Matthias

THREE LADIES

i.

So many incorrupt bodies, such
Corrupting times!
Edmund to and fro for years,

Inspected, found intact,
Unburied & unbothered & unblemished-
And then, then these ladies

These incorruptible ladies
Like Etheldreda Queen & Sainted Audrey
Earlier than Edmund even

Wearing round her neck a fabled string
Of beads that purpled flesh
Into a fatal tumor that she liked:

She had, she said, been vain.
Daughter of the hypothetical incumbent
Of the ship at Sutton Hoo,

Daughter of the priest who taught her,
...


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