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The Saturday poem: The Box


by Vona Groarke

I sat in a garden of medieval wildflowers
and let the sun insist upon my face.
There was a city at my back
with the kind of light at play

that had knowledge of blue enamel
and chinoiserie,
limestone carved into a sleeve,
the river's secular motet.

I was thinking of the silver box
I hadn't bought at the market stall,

of how I might have opened it
there in the tapestry garden,
let the dust of all that feeling,
all those words, fall at my feet.

It was June and the two years were up.
I had no sense to make of it.
The city passed its small gold coins
from one hand to the other.

• From X by Vona Groarke, published by The Gallery Press. To order a copy for €11.95 go to gallerypress.com.

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