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This poem is taken from PN Review 33, Volume 10 Number 1, September - October 1983.

The Breaking of Luther Drake Richard Poole

'Are such things done on Albions shore.' - Blake

1. It seems that I must speak of Luther Drake
                        though he is dead
and it is long since too late for words.
He has returned to the black soil he loved,
                        swallowed by earth
which takes in millionaire, madman and tramp
                        indifferently -
for no flesh is too rich for its digestion.

Luther Drake, a farmer's son, became a farmer:
                        it was enough.
Sun and rain seasoned him, and every temperature,
until he weathered like a stout timberpost
                        that holds firm
although it come to bend a little,
stooping under compulsion of the air;
...


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