DAY FORTY-FOUR – Andrew McMillan

pastoral after Hughes

I cannot think what this will mean for us
so I take myself out to the fields
the untilled wheat   the centre for the bird
calls   there is drama unfolding in the woods
it has burnt itself out when I reach it
only the aftermath   the hound   its mouth
in the open purse of the stomach
the hot wet stink around his lips   the fox
an empty robe   laid out on the ground
dead ceremony    the neck broken   eyes
ripened from their sockets      either side
of the brokenbridgespine   the synapses
that could make sense of all of this    fizz
like a bulb about to lose the last of its light



Andrew McMillan was born in South Yorkshire in 1988; his first collection, physical, published by Jonathan Cape in July, is a Poetry Book Society Recommendation for Autumn 2015 and shorlisted for the Forward Prize for Best First Collection. He lectures in Creative Writing at Liverpool John Moores University



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