Stephen Robertson

Slanting Lines

Concordance

This concordance provides an index to every word in the poems, excluding a list of common "stopwords".  It may be useful in finding a half-remembered poem, and perhaps in looking at the usage of words in the poems as a whole.  It will be readable only on a large screen.

D

// Ring M about Xmas // // Ring Tony
D about works in basement // // Tickets for Once Sat night—check time
z on Sheffield.  // // In north Africa,
D is killed.  // // Later, one of the lodgers— // // Polish servicema
ors.  // // But the next war comes, and
D is now called up.  // // First to Hunmanby on the north-east Yorkshi
two days later, // // she says to her
dad // // “Judith is a painter, isn’t she?”  // // Yes.  // // “Then
ttle.  // // Pause.  // // Repeat twice
daily .  // // (Not by the sun // // —use moontime // // instead).  //
shop to seek supplies // // becomes a
daily ritual.  // // Suffolk, circa 1958 // // After the floods of fi
Twice
daily // // Start.  // // Tiptoe.  // // Probe.  // // Grow.  // // P
ow I flick my wand // // some miles of
dale and moor to skip across // // and find myself in wooded Janet’s
Daydream
Dale Journey // // From Ilkley’s old stone bridge I trace a path //
there will be more.  // // More hills,
dales , crags, beaches // // more boat or cycle rides // // more walk
y.  // // Mountains, valleys, moors and
dales , meadows, // // hills, ravines descending, under the sky.  // /
ves, replenishes, makes good // // the
damaged present, this dark night?  // // Not to return to old // // w
again?  // // No.  No.  No.  No.  // //
Dammit , used them yesterday.  Must be somewhere.  // // Start again, f
ink. // // 1 back: frustration // //
Damn —I had forgotten // // that this equation also needs some zeta fa
dresser, already ancient in // // the
damp basement of the Peckham house // // that we bought some forty ye
elow, // // tendrils into the dark and
damp .  Now push out above, // // buds into the waxing light, the sprin
igh, // // and head thrown back, I can
dance .  // //
Dance // // // A quarter of a mile or more // // straight up // //
This may be the end // // The
dance // // In her very own month of May // // she says “Now’s the t
“Now’s the time—fix the day.  // // You
dance to my tune, // // I’ll lead.”  But come June // // it turns ou
/ // On the other // // the source of
danger // // a wolf crouches // // his senses tingling, too.  // //
p, cowering // // —and a lamb, sensing
danger // // suckling.  // // On the other // // the source of dange
ndsome prince will boldly go // // and
dangers great will bravely face, // // the world just so.  // // True
Only through the mirror’s gloam // //
Dared she look to Camelot.  // // Not until the fateful day // // Whe
can reach.  // // Who is this now, who
dares me eat a peach?  // // Time’s warring chariots can clatter by— /
Gathering
dark // // // // // // // // // // // // // // // // /
lation.  // // The rest of the world is
dark .  // //
p-sided vees and slanting lines, // //
dark against the sky.  // // Ahead, another line, // // flat and shar
ush out below, // // tendrils into the
dark and damp.  Now push out above, // // buds into the waxing light,
he beginning of space // // the sky is
dark , but the raging fire // // of the sun marks passing time.  // //
compacted mud.  // // Evening.  A great
dark cloud // // fire-edged, blots out the setting sun.  // // Later,
rative.  // // Born nineteen-seventeen (
dark days of the first world war) // // in Sheffield, steel town.  //
es, and planted fireworks // // in the
dark edges beyond the flickering light.  // // Nearly-five-year-old Co
whirl away // // into the encroaching
dark .  // // Feel the earth.  Feel the water return // // to the dry g
Coast to coast // //
dark forest // // flashing stream // // bright sea // // rugged moo
nd is bowling on, // // trees bending,
dark green leaves showing // // their lighter backs, a few edging //
y?  // // Probably not until well after
dark has come.  // // Should I start crawling the miles remaining, or
// tiny light // // fading now // //
dark night // //
Wake // // Fast asleep // //
dark night // // dream deep // // faint light // // bird sings //
ovember the days were short, // // and
dark night fell as we built and lit the fire // // on the dark stones
s good // // the damaged present, this
dark night?  // // Not to return to old // // ways—that age // // ha
Bonfire // //
Dark night // // strike match // // tiny light // // twigs catch //
Your snore // // Alone in the
dark of the night // // I would’ve turned on the light...  // // But
natural too: // // pale sky encounters
dark sea.  // // On the sand, a scattering of razor shells // // that
// to the dry ground.  Let the cooling
dark // // settle around and about, under and over.  // // Complete a
up, my love—the sky is calling.  // //
Dark shapes are calling each to each: a throng // // moves north agai
/ lightning rods earthed.  // // On the
dark side of the earth, // // in the light of a fire, // // and fain
we built and lit the fire // // on the
dark stones, and planted fireworks // // in the dark edges beyond the
traight pines reach for the sky, // //
dark trunks against the blue, // // shed long thin needles.  // // In
ea about 2ft square of brush marks in a
darker paint, made by a house-painter cleaning his brush after paintin
er far, a corniced window bay // // in
darker wood.  Clear morning sunlight fills // // the room we glimpse
attices of life // // through glasses,
darkly .  // // —A fragment, formulated forty years ago // // and file
// // the embers beneath the ash were
darkly glowing, asking only // // a slight encouragement.  As the day
clouds by day, // // the stars and the
darkness by night, // // the ocean, the blue-green-grey-black ocean,
tendrils far, // // invading the inky
darkness , keeping // // at bay the frights night has in store.  // //
ht she should— // // but keeping us in
darkness so // // cannot be good.  // // Nevertheless I draw the line
// // more shapes, more colours, more
darknesses // // more storms, gales, lightning bolts // // more days
e maiden’s death, // // the trout that
dart and pause and flicker under // // the bubbling brooks, that chat
o not blink.  // // In time, an instant
dash : // // a shooting star.  // // To the sharp senses, nature has m
trespass on Kinderscout.  // // Meet a
dashing young fellow rambler.  // // Marry, find a home // // on the
/ // (Under the lino, newspaper // //
dated 1933 // // the year Hitler came to power).  // // Then we get o
// But within a few years, both son and
daughter // // are dead too.  Back to Sheffield again.  // // How man
own // // full of family and lodgers. 
Daughter born // // at the height of the Luftwaffe’s // // blitz on
entury ago // // when I first met your
daughter // // I have known fragments, snatches— // // some now half
/ // in a Sheffield steel mill.  // //
Daughter moves away to teach, and then // // to marry me.  Son develo
forms against the wire brush // // of
David’s thick black hair, // // staying in place until at home // //
n’t no place for sissies.  // // —Bette
Davis // //
write it in a verse.  // // But now the
dawn has come, it does not pass, // // this figment of my own imagina
which I’m caught // // Which, come the
dawn , will surely quickly pass.  // // I’d paint it for you if I had t
w our sense of // // time, rebuild the
day .  // //
// the Newlyn harbour wall.  // // One
day , a storm will // // simply erase them.  // // Four years ago a st
Tomorrow // // The
day after tomorrow // // tomorrow // // will be yesterday.  // //
the living, do not kill // // another
day .”  // // And yet you stay // // inside my head, and take away my
Another
day // // Another day // // to feel your ever-present absence, still
The Lady of Shalott.  // // Working all
day at her loom, // // Her mistress never left the womb // // That w
ember: nights are drawing in // // the
day begins to go // // the clouds are low and spitting rain.  // // T
the black boiler hair belly.  // // The
day boiler duck is miscellaneous.  // //
way // // sleep clings // // break of
day // // brighter now // // here to stay // // morning glow // //
f the trousers which he had worn on the
day but one preceding.”  // // —James Joyce, Ulysses.  // //
g.  // // Did I love enough? use every
day ?  // // Days for seeing you in different ways.  // // Days enough
x form??  // // Check L’s dob—70 next b/
day ?  // // Dentist appointment—week of 10th // // Write poem for Wed
// // No, more than that.  Maybe for a
day — // // even more maybe—for a year and a day // // in Norfolk whe
gue.  Why is it that // // this latter-
day fruit so often disappoints?  // // Did I just dream the taste?  //
memory, for good or ill, // // another
day .  // // I cannot say // // whether I have the necessary skill //
// // even more maybe—for a year and a
day // // in Norfolk where the sign reads slow you down.  // //
terval passed by.  // // An uncompleted
day // // is not yet to be fixed— // // but each interval passing by
laying down the past— // // until the
day , just nine months gone, // // when both lines crossed an edge, //
are flying out // // on their twice-a-
day migration between feeding grounds // // in lop-sided vees and sla
ys the morning // // of an uncompleted
day .  // // Not until light is fading // // has the interval passed b
eydale // // they passed the following
day .  // // Of shoes and ships and sealing wax, // // and such great
er, mix well // // mollycoddle for one
day // // put in pouch // // ready to go // // // // // // Reci
t now the light is fading // // as the
day slides into the mist.  // // Morning is always the morning.  // //
but notched on the stick // // as the
day slides into the mist.  // // The long night’s images last.  // //
2-3 // // This year it snows on Boxing
Day .  // // The country road not cleared for days // // —and then of
// expecting to find it cold, but every
day // // the embers beneath the ash were darkly glowing, asking only
alls // // and whether it was night or
day ; // // the gardens, and the garden walls // // just slipped away
e rain // // the sun and the clouds by
day , // // the stars and the darkness by night, // // the ocean, the
er, mix well // // mollycoddle for one
day // // throw half away // // more flour, water, mix well // // m
er, mix well // // mollycoddle for one
day // // throw half away // // more flour, water, mix well // // m
er, mix well // // mollycoddle for one
day // // throw half away // // more flour, water, mix well // // m
Another day // // Another
day // // to feel your ever-present absence, still // // to find a w
suppose tomorrow’s still // // another
day // // to find a way.  // //
// // a slight encouragement.  As the
day went on, // // we generated quantities of fuel // // and built a
o Camelot.  // // Not until the fateful
day // // When, gleaming in his knight’s array // // And gaily singi
// // she says “Now’s the time—fix the
day .  // // You dance to my tune, // // I’ll lead.”  But come June //
Daydream Dale Journey // // From Ilkley’s old stone bridge I trace a
te // // In other news // // // Five
days after Charlie Hebdo, I learn // // that something is growing at
e fire once begun // // would last for
days and days.  Each morning I came down, // // expecting to find it
// // The country road not cleared for
days // // —and then of course it snows again.  // // One afternoon f
ce begun // // would last for days and
days .  Each morning I came down, // // expecting to find it cold, but
or seeing you in different ways.  // //
Days enough for giving and receiving.  // // Did I give enough?  // //
d I love enough? use every day?  // //
Days for seeing you in different ways.  // // Days enough for giving a
that was forty years ago // // —these
days his hair is white all through.) // // ‘Every mile is two’? no,
galleries in many places.  Three solid
days in the Uffizi in Florence.  Walking in the drizzle the long appro
.  The Hermitage in Leningrad in Soviet
days .  Kettle’s Yard in Cambridge when it was still managed by Jim Ede
r-old Emily visits.  // // At home, two
days later, // // she says to her dad // // “Judith is a painter, is
ain // // away from you, in those last
days of pain, // // another summer, home in Camberwell.  // // Betwee
rms, gales, lightning bolts // // more
days of sun or rain or passing cloud // // more meetings with old fri
e.  // // Born nineteen-seventeen (dark
days of the first world war) // // in Sheffield, steel town.  // // M
/ Between the endpoints there were many
days // // —or should have been—for many kinds of loving.  // // Did
k shingle beach.  // // In November the
days were short, // // and dark night fell as we built and lit the fi
is now long gone.  // // In just a few
days ’ time, these two will meet // // and clash — and I’m to be the b
, when they come to Paris // // Manuel
de Falla and Igor Stravinsky.  // // A turn, a period of change?  // /
There must be moonshine // // Fin
de siècle.  // // Ethel Sargant, botanist // // (Girton student 1880s
// There was a lull— // // But he was
dead : // // had died three hours after his arrival, // // was buried
years, both son and daughter // // are
dead too.  Back to Sheffield again.  // // How many friends have you o
// // schizophrenia.  // // After G’s
death , a chance // // for something new: migrate south // // to Lon
o much we’ll never see.  // // Life and
death are two, and now are one: // // no perfectability except our ow
our own.  // // His senseless trenches
death at twenty three // // reminds us of so much we’ll never see.  //
s level best // // to drink himself to
death .  But for these falls, // // no drink involved.  // // P // //
st left behind.  // // This is the heat-
death of the universe; // // the restaurant has closed, // // and th
the mill-girl’s beauty or the maiden’s
death , // // the trout that dart and pause and flicker under // // t
for such immortality, // // life after
death would not be to my taste; // // rather, look forward to final o
ext door: // // thesis and antithesis,
debate // // about it and about, and evermore // // voices coming fr
next door:  // // Thesis and Antithesis
debate .  // // In the lecture room // // His voice is lively, gesture
inst, and more, against and for; // //
debate is all—a synthesis can wait.  // // Voices coming from the room
again.  They’ve been there // // for a
decade now.  // //
n waves roll on.  // // How many years,
decades , centuries // // have I lain upon this sandy seafloor?  // //
now recall.  // // Cities flourish and
decay .  In forgotten corners, // // artists create and sometimes dest
t subliminal sibilance of night.  // //
December sounds // // Even I, atheist, find some of them sublime— //
// // Below the bulges, // // not yet
decipherable , // // orange and penny.  // // Brandy, a candle:  // //
tillness // // on evening tide.  // //
Decisions and revisions and reversions, // // reversings and reversal
ough still, warm air.  // // On the top
deck of a 68 // // Voices, ipods, phones speak out— // // add to the
ins our own // // tree-house, a canted
deck of ancient planks, // // nailed across two angled branches, reac
n trains; more rarely, // // carriages
decked in the blue and gold livery // // of the Compagnie Internation
d to blow us away // // Now sluice the
decks to cool the wood // // Way-hay, blow us away // // And pour a
waiting to be found.  // // Waiting for
declension , conjugation, // // other morphologic variations, // // a
// // pieces half-constructed or half-
deconstructed , // // for some architectural or mechanical purpose //
oks // // were saved from all sorts of
deconstructed // // objects: defunct household gadgets, // // broken
is flat // // in face, no sign of the
deep bay windows that // // adorn most later London terraced fronts. 
odwit, curlew—long // // beaks probing
deep // // beneath the // // shining // // mud.  // // Sonnet // /
ich // // the falling tide reveals the
deep black mud // // which oozes softly up between our toes.  Across
June.  // // A blue lagoon, // // the
deep blue sky.  // // The crescent moon // // some cryptic rune.  //
ck walls, knife-edge against // // the
deep blue sky.  We take our boots off, // // dip our feet into water
long beaks buried full // // to probe
deep down beneath the shining mud.  // //
/ // // // // // // // Somewhere
deep down in my abysmal gut // // (well, really, just around the fina
t asleep // // dark night // // dream
deep // // faint light // // bird sings // // growing bright // //
/ narrow stream // // open moor // //
deep lake // // high mountain // // wide sea // // close forest //
tches us, then flips away, // // dives
deep , leaving behind a swirling wake.  // // Nearer, the lapwings fora
// // that somewhere herein lies some
deep philosophy?  // // Voices, ipods, phones speak out— // // add to
ga, they will emerge // // a startling
deep red, and taste delicious.) // // Another tree, perhaps a beech,
e form into rows and columns across the
deep .  // // Without knowing what it is, // // we take on the purpose
rawing lines.  // // Chomsky looked for
deeper motivation // // underneath their surface combinations.  // //
// // or take you on a voyage through
deepest space: // // fall, fall into the writer’s well-cast spell.  //
ght hundred:  Scotland // // Dufftown;
Deeside ; Dumfries // // roads; villages // // One to sixty three tho
// // Whichever wins, whichever meets
defeat , // // the relict of the fight will be my wound.  // // The go
ed yards // // of man’s best effort at
defence // // drops thirty feet into a hole.  // // Cambridge, circa
then haul up behind us, ready // // to
defend against the next attack.  // // Towards the river is a group of
sorts of deconstructed // // objects: 
defunct household gadgets, // // broken furniture, shelves no longer
g // // under the door, // // sending
delicate tendrils far, // // invading the inky darkness, keeping //
// // a startling deep red, and taste
delicious .) // // Another tree, perhaps a beech, but green // // (I
recious hoard (I mean the ones you will
deliver // // for tomorrow’s blackberry-and-apple pie // // —the one
factor // // and my clear beta, gamma,
delta connection // // is screwed up by a zeta factor // // in ways
n to determine // // whether some real
delta integration // // is possible at all.  I have to try.  // //
gestion // // to make the beta, gamma,
delta link. // // 1 back: frustration // // Damn—I had forgotten //
inspiration // // Alpha, beta, gamma,
delta .  // // The way is clear.  This formulation // // both lays the
hed, the edges fenced, the house // //
demolished and rebuilt.  The trees remain.  // //
ase them.  // // Four years ago a storm
demolished // // the dunes on the beach across the creek // // and h
to worry, and agreed to sell // // for
demolition , move to Camberwell.  // // (Two weeks later, British Rail’
d-on weight scale.  A device // // for
demonstrating electricity to children: // // a wooden board on which
k involved.  // // P // // The fall is
denied .  // // Anyway, the cancer can be blamed // // for many things
over their relations, // // find their
denotations , connotations.  // // Roget charted their associations.  //
irling stream // // smooth lake // //
dense forest // // rough moor // // million-year moor // // ten-mil
ile down the road // // and into whose
dense interior // // we sometimes venture.  // // Beyond the fir-tree
// Check L’s dob—70 next b/day?  // //
Dentist appointment—week of 10th // // Write poem for Weds // //
ease switch off the lights.  // // This
departure has arrived.  // // The locomotive will desist from locomoti
g pace) // // —but Sadiq the Most Evil
deposes poor Boris, and // // gets the Red Margaret to look at the ca
Housepaint // // The
depths of south London, 1969.  // // A small Victorian terrace house /
// red was the evening sky.  // // By
Derby town they settled down // // on purple sage to lie.  // // A Ch
ery edge of Sheffield // // facing the
Derbyshire moors.  // // But the next war comes, and D is now called u
ious route from the valley, with // //
Derwent behind me and scrambles ahead of me.  // // Out of the pasture
avel has just joined // // the Société
des Apaches // // (or Bunch of Hooligans) // // later to enrol, when
nternationale des Wagons-Lits // // et
des Grands Express Européens pass by.  // // In the end, it was the ra
// // of the Compagnie Internationale
des Wagons-Lits // // et des Grands Express Européens pass by.  // //
he ridge to the pinnacle.  // // Now to
descend , an alternative route which is // // known as the Allerdale R
below and limestone crags above; // //
descend the steps to reach the valley floor— // // to leave behind, f
d dales, meadows, // // hills, ravines
descending , under the sky.  // // Oceans, rivers, narrow channels, tor
Iken Hall // // Later, my mother will
describe the house itself // // as ugly.  No such thought would cross
ham; Bisharin // // railways; borders;
deserts // // One to five million:  Gulf of St Lawrence // // Shicks
// // The Boris is happy.  “We need a
designer with // // boldness and vision—I know just the man.  // // H
has arrived.  // // The locomotive will
desist from locomotion, // // this is our final destination.  // // T
// // On television?  // // No.  // //
Desk ?  // // No.  // // Bedside table?  // // No.  // // Kitchen again
irculation keeps // // Finnegan going (
despite it’s his wake)— // // Beethoven’s music is just bloody marvel
Destination (and beginning—for G) // // From random junctures in prime
om locomotion, // // this is our final
destination .  // // These are the buffers, this is the end of the line
r ships in stately progress pass // //
destined for Harwich or for Felixstowe.  // //
rs, // // artists create and sometimes
destroy .  Did I really // // spring from the hands of the great Praxi
zles which propel // // your thoughts,
destroy or reconstruct a case: // // jump willing into every word-fil
lysm // // which will both inspire and
destroy // // so many poets and other artists // // which will drag
It’s getting beyond a bad joke.  // //
Destroying our comfort’s as rotten // // as stealing a library book. 
er // // some way in that direction to
determine // // whether some real delta integration // // is possibl
each, and then // // to marry me.  Son
develops // // schizophrenia.  // // After G’s death, a chance // //
// // from a stand-on weight scale.  A
device // // for demonstrating electricity to children: // // a wood
ow the west-to-east coast-to-coast walk
devised by Wainwright, you get sunburnt on the right side of your face
ric fan.  The dial of a clock.  Another
dial , // // from a stand-on weight scale.  A device // // for demons
g machine.  // // An electric fan.  The
dial of a clock.  Another dial, // // from a stand-on weight scale. 
// add to the road’s cacophony.  // //
Dialectic // // Voices coming from the room next door: // // thesis
n pole, // // two and a half inches in
diameter (the pole // // itself and four-inch rings surely to be foun
movements // // are born, copulate and
die .  // // But for the real turn, the cataclysm // // which will bot
wind: we care not a tittle.  // // Many
die —thus limiting their needs.  // // This time, the bug’s not spread
l group // // —and then, when that one
died , one more.  // // Where have all the duffles gone?  // // Anoraks
ull— // // But he was dead: // // had
died three hours after his arrival, // // was buried in an unmarked g
wenty three years later, when my mother
died // // we had the proper formal funeral.  // // (She had chosen t
ns.  // // Right on cue, Queen Victoria
dies .  // // (Next time around, in the digital era // // we will take
not breed true.  Now strife: // // the
different dittoes must compete for life.  // // Another billion random
eality in which I live // // is likely
different from the one you know.  // // It is the space in which I mus
s country that I go.  // // It’s likely
different from the one you know: // // to you, this is a dream in whi
hange, one more new beginning: // // a
different kind of home // // here on the north Norfolk coast.  // //
er, meeting you.  // // The world looks
different now.  // //
dispel // // and conjure me to quite a
different place.  // // Jump willing into every word-filled well, //
duds.  Nevertheless // // ten thousand
different species rise and fall // // and rise again.  Great populatio
ing chance of might-have-been, // // a
different stitch to cast?  // // No, I’m glad we did not meet // // b
very day?  // // Days for seeing you in
different ways.  // // Days enough for giving and receiving.  // // Di
om land // // (Navigation was always a
difficult art, // // Though with only one ship and one bell.) // //
e Allerdale Ramble, traversing a // //
difficult scree but then joining an easier // // path with spectacula
the while // // the crafty sea is also
digging down // // beneath the piles.  Then one stormy night // // i
dies.  // // (Next time around, in the
digital era // // we will take the turn on the zero, not the one //
softness, giant but gentle.  // // Soft
digits hold softly, lift softly // // place softly against another so
of my privacy.  // // An assault on my
dignity .  // // An abrogation of my autonomy.  // // Objective // //
re).  // // See this: // // the large,
dilapidated country house // // that is my mother’s next big venture
op cloth, slipper satin, worsted // //
dimity , blazer, babouche // // borrowed light, dimpse, mizzle, skylig
and spitting rain.  // // The light is
dimming now.  // // Further north the rain teems down // // enough to
blazer, babouche // // borrowed light,
dimpse , mizzle, skylight // // ammonite, mahogany, archive // // plu
// Kitchen?  // // No.  No.  No.  // //
Dining table?  // // No.  // // Beside easy chair?  // // No.  // // O
round.  // // The plants, the fish, the
dinosaurs , the apes // // advance across the generations.  Each // //
lue sky.  We take our boots off, // //
dip our feet into water clear and achingly cold, // // and dry them o
r.  Send a letter.  // // Scented paper,
dip -pen, ink.  // // Branch post office, penny stamp.  // // I love yo
the sky.  // // Sea-birds, pond-birds,
dippers , warblers, song-birds, // // waders, hunters hovering under t
ay, blow us away // // And we can some
direction find // // Give me some wind to blow us away // //
ayful, like the wind.  // // It changes
direction from minute to minute; // // gives me siblings to chase or
not a line, // // at least some vague
direction .  // // Once in a while, though, they seem // // to switch
need to wander // // some way in that
direction to determine // // whether some real delta integration //
ast and last, // // the future is fast
disappearing .  // //
t // // this latter-day fruit so often
disappoints ?  // // Did I just dream the taste?  // // But no.  Once i
ng // // —thought it was going to be a
disaster // // but then it began rolling out its own // // finite bu
Unnatural
disasters // // Pribble and prabble: as // // Nigel’s marauding and
trees, a very few // // of which I can
discern , even perhaps // // identify across the years.  A copper beec
two in place.  // // Subjective // //
Discomfort .  Bother.  // // Irritation.  Nuisance.  // // Pain? no, no
// you must be nimble.  // // Later we
discover // // that that was just a sideshow: all the while // // t
nson’s ministrations, // // waiting to
discover their relations, // // find their denotations, connotations.
brain // // and splits apart Edwardian
disdain .  // // Man and drill are two, and now are one: // // no perf
// // some people have some nasty new
disease .  // // They seem to want our help, but they can whistle // /
lms.  Sometimes you must stop // // to
disentangle a particularly tenacious tendril // // before you can bac
river drives meal chicken, // // Olive
dish dried meat floss stir fries a leaf mustard.  // // The small bowl
d tins are stacked // // in increasing
disorder along the back // // of the bench, as far as the window.  //
// And now, this book, the here and now
dispel // // and conjure me to quite a different place.  // // Jump w
te and grow, // // all tribulations to
displace , // // far away and long ago, // // the world just so.  //
// // in magazines, on billboards high
displayed , // // each model posed in languid attitude, // // in birt
Distance chart // // Cambridge–Camden 59 miles // //
ng with unfocussed eyes // // into the
distance down the street.  I could not see // // what he saw…  // //
/ shed long thin needles.  // // In the
distance , // // gnarled broadleaf trees with twisted limbs // // she
ts // // are signposted with names and
distances // // that only roughly match the map.  At others, though,
ed well.  // // That book will tales of
distant countries tell // // or take you on a voyage through deepest
nlight, over grass, towards // // some
distant point outside the picture frame.  // // What does she see?  Is
arsh-birds calling // // echoes of the
distant sea-swell rock them // // Breath the scents the sea-winds bri
ng: // // wallpaper from walls, // //
distemper from ceilings, // // paint from woodwork, // // lino from
t flagons.  Flagons might indeed // //
distract me, or Suliman, from his pilaf.  // // But stay me not with r
/ Holiday cottage, the edge of the Lake
District — // // family wanting to rest and recuperate.  // // Skiddaw
th us // // churning the water, // //
disturbing our roll, // // getting higher and closer.  // // And the
time // // it is just the timing that
disturbs .  The line // // mostly carries suburban trains; more rarely
f again, and fill // // the world with
dittoed offspring.  Yet it will // // occasionally not breed true.  Now
true.  Now strife: // // the different
dittoes must compete for life.  // // Another billion random changes: 
eal watches us, then flips away, // //
dives deep, leaving behind a swirling wake.  // // Nearer, the lapwing
g before // // the children arrived) I
divided each drawer // // into four or more sections, with plywood st
id I submit tax form??  // // Check L’s
dob —70 next b/day?  // // Dentist appointment—week of 10th // // Writ
fragile life is there.  // // Each new
doctor asks the same once more, // // voices from the curtained bed n
The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy
dog // //
// // Two book-ends bracket our shared
domain : // // the start, the lobby of a Greek hotel // // in summer,
lge in the felicity // // Of unbounded
domesticity . // // (not the Pirates of Penzance – apologies to WSG) /
Now the rail joints are welded, and the
dominant sound // // is continuous and high-pitched.  The borders we
// enough to overflow // // the river
Don and flood the plain.  // // The light is fading now.  // // Politi
hen my mother, acquiring a newer model,
donated // // the reject to us for our new home.  Or was it // // no
All
done with mirrors // // One Friday morning when we set sail // // an
Donkeys don’t wear jackets // // Shapeless, navy blue or fawn, // //
e light that’s leaking // // under the
door .  // //
// // Someone snoring in the tent next
door , // // a motorcycle coursing up the lane.  // // Night-time nois
// // voices coming from the room next
door .  // // For and against, and more, against and for; // // debate
g // // from the sofa just outside the
door .  // // It really is very annoying— // // I hope we don’t lose a
hat one.  // // But no.  // // Table by
door ?  // // No.  // // Kitchen?  // // No.  No.  No.  // // Dining ta
// in motion // // sun on skin // //
door open // // breathe in.  // // Now begin.  // //
ailing faculties to place // // at its
door .  Rage too against // // the cessation of treatment— // // but
// voices from the curtained bed next
door .  // // Responses muted, though the sense is raw, // // to quest
it’s spilling, seeping // // under the
door , // // sending delicate tendrils far, // // invading the inky d
// Voices from the curtained bed next
door : // // someone else’s fragile life is there.  // //
// Voices from the curtained bed next
door : // // someone else’s fragile life is there.  // // Each new doc
Start again, from the beginning, by the
door .  // // Tables, shelves, cupboards, hooks, drawers.  // // Places
e silly, that’s just a draught from the
door .  // // That tiny movement in the corner?  The hem of an emerging
Landing light // // Under the
door the glow is peeking, // // feeling its way across the floor.  //
// // Voices coming from the room next
door : // // thesis and antithesis, debate // // about it and about,
// // Voices coming from the room next
door :  // // Thesis and Antithesis debate.  // // In the lecture room
path // // leads from the glazed back
door // // through box and holly grown to full maturity // // to an
2; Bathroom; Bicycle shed // // walls;
doors ; drains // // One to ten:  Tiles // // Ormeaux on Bastille; Orm
nd watch the stars emerge.  // // Sharp
dots ; but watch and do not blink.  // // In time, an instant dash:  //
A trifle(with
double cream) // // // // Dr Foster went to Gloucester // // for a
d stop. // // † as we step through the
double -starred list of the actinoids // // ‡ by means of reactors or
// // So many people talking: can we
doubt // // that somewhere herein lies some deep philosophy?  // // V
on, calluna // // brassica, hay, pelt,
dove tale, pigeon // // mouse’s back, mole’s or elephant’s breath //
, picks them up, // // and strews them
downwind .  // // The cliff // // is of course ephemeral, built // //
rifle(with double cream) // // // //
Dr Foster went to Gloucester // // for a summer spin— // // and like
morphologic variations, // // awaiting
Dr Johnson’s ministrations, // // waiting to discover their relations
when gales are threatening // // keep
drafts out and comfort in—but // // there was an old man called Micha
ets and other artists // // which will
drag us // // kicking and screaming of course // // but maybe also w
// the world just so.  // // A wingéd
dragon , flying low, // // will seek a human sacrifice, // // far awa
till catches at my tastebuds // // and
drags me back again.  // //
the end, the moment life just seemed to
drain // // away from you, in those last days of pain, // // another
und of scraping has ceased.  // // This
drain germinates here.  // //
the case.  // // “It’s been a fiasco, a
drain on our taxes.  The // // tendering process was not at all fair.
bbeek; Gramsbergen // // conurbations;
drained land // // One to three hundred and sixteen thousand eight hu
The tide runs out, the creek // // is
draining back again towards the sea.  // // Along the muddy margins, i
The tide runs out, the creek // // is
draining back towards the sea.  // // Along the margins waders // //
room; Bicycle shed // // walls; doors;
drains // // One to ten:  Tiles // // Ormeaux on Bastille; Ormeaux on
e?  // // Don’t be silly, that’s just a
draught from the door.  // // That tiny movement in the corner?  The h
a messenger.  // // I love you.  // //
Draughty hall.  Now send a letter.  // // Parchment, new quill pen, and
/ cannot be good.  // // Nevertheless I
draw the line // // at dropping onto Isaac’s head.  // // His inspira
// the children arrived) I divided each
drawer // // into four or more sections, with plywood strips // // c
ge sits // // a miniature wooden eight-
drawered chest // // given to me (budding carpenter) as a child // /
upside down.  // // Bedroom again, more
drawers and cupboards.  // // Chair with pile of clothes.  // // Feel
// Tables, shelves, cupboards, hooks,
drawers .  // // Places I wouldn’t have put them.  // // Move anything
plastic chest with small, clear plastic
drawers // // —unlabelled, but the nuts and bolts and washers // //
ember blues // // November: nights are
drawing in // // the day begins to go // // the clouds are low and s
ations, // // ranking, taking logs and
drawing lines.  // // Chomsky looked for deeper motivation // // unde
/ The field is ready now, the lines are
drawn .  // // Whichever wins, whichever meets defeat, // // the relic
s in plaster or cement or resin, // //
draws in pencil or pen or charcoal, // // paints in oils on hardboard
// Fast asleep // // dark night // //
dream deep // // faint light // // bird sings // // growing bright
I dreamt // // The dream I dreamt, the
dream I dreamt // // just slipped away.  // // What it said, or what
The dream I dreamt // // The
dream I dreamt, the dream I dreamt // // just slipped away.  // // Wh
The
dream I dreamt // // The dream I dreamt, the dream I dreamt // // ju
one you know: // // to you, this is a
dream in which I’m caught.  // // But through this land, this country
I had the art // // To you, this is a
dream in which I’m caught // // Which, come the dawn, will surely qui
so often disappoints?  // // Did I just
dream the taste?  // // But no.  Once in a while // // a perfect burs
be nothing—maybe she // // is pensive,
dreaming , lost in reverie.  // // And the artist who is showing us the
ore sleeps, more sleepless nights, more
dreams // // more seasons bleeding into seasons.  // // Just not so m
r of Rosamunde.  // // Sorrow, longing,
dreams pervade the path // // in any season.  // // The author, he wh
// // The dream I dreamt, the dream I
dreamt // // just slipped away.  // // What it said, or what it meant
The dream I dreamt // // The dream I
dreamt , the dream I dreamt // // just slipped away.  // // What it sa
The dream I
dreamt // // The dream I dreamt, the dream I dreamt // // just slipp
floor ridges // // Now a bottom-feeder
dredges // // Through the silt of Camelot.  // // But what is this sm
s a scene, a group of people in evening
dress , top hats and the like, appropriate to some earlier era of the h
round the Cambridge crematorium, // //
dressed for the occasion, // // we read the flower-borne messages //
// The bench was once // // a kitchen
dresser , already ancient in // // the damp basement of the Peckham ho
, not a cause.  // // A // // The fall
drew blood.  // // No such obvious culprit here, // // except for age
drives meal chicken, // // Olive dish
dried meat floss stir fries a leaf mustard.  // // The small bowl of w
of the creek as smooth as satin, // //
drifting or paddling gently side by side, // // through clear and coo
world—and I, // // roaming, rambling,
drifting under the sky.  // //
apart Edwardian disdain.  // // Man and
drill are two, and now are one: // // no perfectability except our ow
the vortex // // // // Jacob’s Rock
Drill pierces through the brain // // and splits apart Edwardian disd
certainly did his level best // // to
drink himself to death.  But for these falls, // // no drink involved
death.  But for these falls, // // no
drink involved.  // // P // // The fall is denied.  // // Anyway, the
ck head.  // // The prefecture of river
drives meal chicken, // // Olive dish dried meat floss stir fries a l
// sweeps spray from our tops, // //
drives us ever onward.  // // Where are we going, so fierce and so fas
ow you down // // just in case we were
driving too fast.  // // I was probably driving too fast // // to see
driving too fast.  // // I was probably
driving too fast // // to see the flowers in the hedgerows.  // // We
the Uffizi in Florence.  Walking in the
drizzle the long approach road to the Kröller-Müller museum outside Am
heavy bombers, lighter now, // // are
droning back towards their bases, // // and fighters too.  The siren
.  // // Retrace.  // // Shrink.  // //
Drop back.  // // Build speed.  // // Build power.  // // Pull in.  //
arlotte’s locks, nancy’s blushes // //
drop cloth, slipper satin, worsted // // dimity, blazer, babouche //
l // // excise officer takes to // //
dropping by unannounced.  // // Catch them at it – // // there must b
Nevertheless I draw the line // // at
dropping onto Isaac’s head.  // // His inspiration is not mine // //
he cropped grass, the sheep- and rabbit-
droppings , // // the bare rocks and the ridge, knife-edge against the
of man’s best effort at defence // //
drops thirty feet into a hole.  // // Cambridge, circa 1966 // // One
ld my weight.’  // // But every step it
drops you down // // into soft snow, up to the tops // // of your gu
o earth.  // // Seconds later, over the
drumming rain, // // a sharp wall of sound.  // // Later still, after
.  // // Back home soon // // warm and
dry .  // // A crescent moon.  // // It’s Jan, not June.  // //
th.  Feel the water return // // to the
dry ground.  Let the cooling dark // // settle around and about, under
the cobwebbed rafters, // // warm and
dry .  // // On waters of the creek as smooth as satin, // // drifting
ter clear and achingly cold, // // and
dry them on warm rock.  // //
Hear the marsh-birds calling // // the
drying sand with muddy spots bespeckled.  // // Breath the scents the
know, the rain and the air?  // // The
drystone wall slanting across the moor, // // the heather and the bra
bowl shrimp // // Do a boiler burn the
duck head.  // // The prefecture of river drives meal chicken, // //
oiler hair belly.  // // The day boiler
duck is miscellaneous.  // //
That scar remote Shalott.  // // In the
duck -weed-smothered edges // // Skinny rats sniff out the ledges, //
changes: all // // —or almost all—are
duds .  Nevertheless // // ten thousand different species rise and fall
s the third.  // // (The first two were
duds ; the bits // // are somewhere back there, along with // // all
ed, one more.  // // Where have all the
duffles gone?  // // Anoraks now, every one.  // //
housand eight hundred:  Scotland // //
Dufftown ; Deeside; Dumfries // // roads; villages // // One to sixty
lidays, // // we chopped and sawed and
dug and then set fire to // // the produce of our labours.  // // A b
seamless // // and, in truth, a little
dull .  // // From Brussels by local train to Ghent: canals and cobbled
home as well: they too can be // // as
dumb as all of us, the gods themselves.  // //
ed:  Scotland // // Dufftown; Deeside;
Dumfries // // roads; villages // // One to sixty three thousand thr
East Hills // // Hills?  Well,
dunes // // maybe two or three metres above // // mean sea level.  //
years ago a storm demolished // // the
dunes on the beach across the creek // // and had a go at East Hills.
// redrawn).  // // The line of pebble-
dunes protects // // a calmer green oasis, band of salt-marsh // //
e fir // // and silver birch along the
dunes that run // // between the marshes and the sea.  The sun // //
s, // // earthquake-waves and volcanic
dust , // // soft breezes and winter gales.  // // Was I shipwrecked? 
rth; // // and at the end, almost with
dying breath, // // a swan-song, left behind for us to ponder, // //
, // // rage // // against // // the
dying // // of the light.  Do not // // go gentle into that good nig
ort // // I’ll just have to ask ‘Where
d’you pee?’  // //