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Two Poems

Sarah Maguire, 20 February 1997

... The Mist Bench Even at night, at random a click – and mist fumes from the watch towers clouding the cuttings with fog Bare leaves are downy turn blurred and glaucous as the fine fur plumps and sleeves itself with water Ten beats and it’s finished The electric leaf buried in the leaves is parched and replenished all night Year-Round Chrysanthemu ...

Spilt Milk

Sarah Maguire, 21 November 1985

... Two soluble aspirins spore in this glass, their mycelia fruiting the water, which I twist into milkiness. The whole world seems to slide into the drain by my window. It has rained and rained since you left, the streets black and muscled with water. Out of pain and exhaustion you came into my mouth, covering my tongue with your good and bitter milk. Now I find you have cashed that cheque ...

Two Poems

Sarah Maguire, 10 July 2003

... For Kathleen Jamie Waist-height, clouds of white lace in the abandoned graveyard, the delicate, filigree umbels matching the thumbprints of lichen embroidering the graves. A deep current of blue surges below – bluebells, moments of sky fallen, brief weather fixed on wet stems, conjuring a climate gone from this chill April dusk, as rain comes, and light fades ...


Sarah Maguire, 23 August 2001

... Freezing out of season     with Eid after Easter – a provisional city    a concatenation of loose roundabouts     building sites   and razor wire – scars of forced demolitions    spite     occupation and new wealth Little Bantustan       rimmed twice with checkpoints claustrophobia       of the stone’s-throw di ...

May Day, 1986

Sarah Maguire, 3 July 1986

... for Tadeusz Slawek Yesterday, the weather in Warsaw was the same as London’s: ‘Sunny; 18°’ (sixty-four Fahrenheit). I am sitting in a walled garden drinking gin, the fading sky as blue as this tonic water loosening its bubbles against the flat ice. What is in the air? The first midges; a television three doors down, its hum like this lone bat avoiding the walnut tree ...

Two Poems

Sarah Maguire, 30 March 2000

... Hibiscus I have no idea what is coming      as I take the hand of a perfect stranger            as I’m taken through the streets of Marrakech. The exhilaration of trust.       The exhilaration of risk,             of balance – of balancing on the back of his Vespa like a teenage lover,        my hands gathering his jacket at the waist,             learning how to give round corners, forgetting the crush of traffic from nine directions,      forgetting the chaos at crossroads,           my cheek now on his back, the disinterested city       open before us,             passing me by ...

Imagining the Suburbs

Stan Smith, 9 January 1992

Common Knowledge 
by John Burnside.
Secker, 62 pp., £6, April 1991, 0 436 20037 6
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The Son of the Duke of Nowhere 
by Philip Gross.
Faber, 57 pp., £4.99, April 1991, 0 571 16140 5
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Bridge Passages 
by George Szirtes.
Oxford, 63 pp., £5.99, March 1991, 0 19 282821 5
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Time Zones 
by Fleur Adcock.
Oxford, 54 pp., £5.99, March 1991, 0 19 282831 2
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Selected Poems 
by Fleur Adcock.
Oxford, 125 pp., £6.99, March 1991, 0 19 558100 8
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Spilt Milk 
by Sarah Maguire.
Secker, 50 pp., £6, April 1991, 0 436 27095 1
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The Sirocco Room 
by Jamie McKendrick.
Oxford, 56 pp., £5.99, March 1991, 0 19 282820 7
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by Gerard Woodward.
Chatto, 80 pp., £5.99, April 1991, 0 7011 3758 4
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... first volumes tread the luminous passages of the real speak from different kinds of expatriation. Sarah Maguire, an Irish orphan born in London, offers some sharp cameos of the metropolitan parish. In her by now statutory but rather good Berlin Wall poem, a piece of concrete from the Wall next to rock from the Moon puts us all in our place. Auguries of ...


John Upton: Damilola Taylor, 4 January 2001

... sentimental heart of the British Public. It is clear that Damilola Taylor is no Princess Diana or Sarah Payne. I stop to read some of the messages with the flowers. Nearly all seem to be from people who live in and around Peckham: church groups and individuals keen to stress their ties with the place (‘I’ve lived here for thirty years,’ one of them ...

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