Caught by the River

Pale Tussock

Will Burns | 26th February 2015

A poem by Will Burns

This is where everybody walks.
Where gangs of dogs rake
through the grassland borders
of an abandoned train track.

Where the path seems to decay
in stages at the edge
blurring concrete into dirt
and mud and stinging nettles.

I am out at night
after a bad dream has run
me through—the one
with that pale moth again,

antennae like deep white ferns
and legs stuck fast against
the glass of the kitchen window
leaving an echo of herself when killed.

And where I’m tripping up,
planting into ground over which
no freight ever got moved and
where no steel ever got laid.

I’ll leave the privet hawks
and ghosts alone tonight.
No pinning them, dead and dusty,
to the bedroom cork board.

Let the hedges throw out
their portions of deep shadow
and listen for the noises
of the market gearing up.

Will Burns on Caught by the River