Fall/Winter 2015-2016

Graham Mort


When you’re not here there’s rain
         sifting onto slates, the porch light’s
bleb of molten resin spun around its
         filament; midges dying with lit wings,
house martins leaving for the shimmy
         of Saharan air; a novel laid under a table
lamp – all fiction and our lives conflated
         there – and rain falling, its fabulations
filling each dimension, expanding a lost
         summer’s legendary wetness: the river
simmering, net furled on the tennis
         court where I watched a white owl
blunder into trees to break its
         vow of loneliness. Even before this,
there was some urgent thing you said
         I didn’t hear, lugging your bags to the
car, half-turning when you turned
         to leave, pouting like a starlet, fluffing
first gear. I swept you away like dust
         from my sleeve, impatient with every
thing that might lay waste to precious
         thoughts alone; now long days dusk to
ghostly nights, wraiths of future life.
         You’re gone as if our sleepy pupal
past has died, dissolving to hatch
         me: goldwing imaginal circling argon
in hot glass, spirals of tungsten, atoms
         that endlessly collide.

Graham Mort is Professor of Creative Writing and Transcultural Literature at Lancaster University. His latest book of short fiction, Terroir, was published by Seren in May 2015. He is working on a new collection of poems scheduled for 2017.



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