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james mcgonigal
Poet  •  Critic

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       Low Country and Western

German is what I’m often mistaken for:
the shape of head, beard line or walk. But I deny
that I was ever there. Niemals.

Narrow houses and lanes, details of darkness
recall light rationed in a war. In the War. These days
we can discuss it frankly

by water that is everywhere. At the front door
the canal’s a gesture that holds sea and sky
in either hand.

Above us, neighbours in a room rich in bookcases.
The wooden staircase spirals to a loft where texts
are still composed:

their bed a desk where love is written and re-read.

Click on the poem title to read the next excerpted poem from The Camphill Wren.