The Robert Graves Review
ONLINE JOURNAL OF THE ROBERT GRAVES SOCIETY
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Poetry

Poems

Michael Longley

 

PLOVERS

I
An anonymous Tommy
On the first day of the Somme
Guarded for half an hour,
For an eternity,
A plover’s nest, to protect
The eggs from being trampled,
The rainbird’s eggs.

II
Under heavy fire the plover that pretends
A broken wing dies of a broken wing.

 

 

DARTFORD WARBLER

It arrived in the post
In answer to my poems,
Jeff’s sparky portrait
Of this rarest bird,
A Dartford warbler
Among gorse blossom,
Once only in my life
Glimpsed in Picardy
Where the Downs continue,
When I stood at the poet’s
Grave and asked myself
Had Edward seen it too.

 

 

Michael Longley, CBE, is an Anglo-Irish poet and a former Ireland Professor of Poetry. Recent additions to his extensive bibliography include Homer's Octopus (2020), and The Candle Light Master (2020). In 2013, he published Robert Graves: Selected Poems.

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