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james mcgonigal
Poet  •  Critic

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       Plain Speaking

I put it to you plainly, as when
in your dark blouse you bend
by the couch where I am writing
to kiss me goodnight, as you lean

forward a little to read these
words—clear as the sheen on new-turned
clay tonight by the garden fence
where the streetlamp burns

or sheer as the Clyde at midnight sketching
plans for a city where no-one talks
while cargoes to tease or break the mind
float by in a sodden box.

Now lighted windows blink: folk fold up
today. Most of the people I’ve known
turning to sleep. Like old cats
hearts ease into the dark alone

and, plainly I tell you, it welcomes them home.

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