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This poem is taken from PN Review 36, Volume 10 Number 4, March - April 1984.

Four Poems Alison Brackenbury

Strange sea: sudden sea: no thing can be the same.
I think of snowdrops and lit hedgerows which
may never have been there.

What lay in that drink that we should stare,
the birds shout salt and harsh; black ways
gape between the water and your eyes?
I burn and my bones melt to gold.
And as I grip your hard wrist and we rise
I understand how our love lies:

not in waves' green light but light's great cold


By the king's tree I walked afraid.
You spoke your riddles tenderly:

Is not the moon's cold rising made
To lure the salt sea from the land?

Is not the horse which bolts with you
Gentle in stall, to brush your hand

And the amazing cherry tree

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