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Alex Smith

Alex Smith’s most recent collection is Ocean Myths.

Poem: ‘Peninsula’

Alex Smith, 21 September 2006

Zennor, Morvah, Pendeen,   where north and south converge – the Atlantic upheaving,   slant sting of rain, 45 degrees to the hill, silver-point light   pricking the granite face. Elephant skin road twisting   between farms, sloshed with slurry. Outbuildings crouch, hugging the fields   like long barrows. Farm people look narrowly from...

Poem: ‘The Late Queen’s Jester’

Alex Smith, 2 September 2004

Crookback, I sit at the great bay window

swinging a pig’s bladder from a stick – a severed head

condemned to lightness. I’m muddled, addled, a mad egg.

Pick, peck, pick – purple-black, I count mussel-coloured elytra,

beetle my brain into shards, listen to nocturnal insect taps,

tick, tick, tap. Laughter turns to cackle.

Whistle and jibe, whistle and jibe . . ....

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