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11 January 2023

The NS Poem: The Pond

A new poem by Matt Howard.

By Matt Howard

TG 34103 06385

Here’s the start of a new sense of things –

just into March, the light and air fuller

and that mallard, so still there at the edge,

her heaviness pending, neck stretched,

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not at rest; she can only be considering

her own streaked reflection, herself, held there

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in the shade, and in the clay-backed mirror

of water, with no call for contact or confrontation,

just caught in a glance of the ways things are;

meeting a fresh slant of our mirrored selves;

now surely this is how it all begins, continues,

as this one, then another and then another.

Matt Howard is the Douglas Caster fellow in poetry at the University of Leeds. His first full collection, “Gall”, was published by the Rialto in 2018

[See also: The greatest modern poems]

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This article appears in the 11 Jan 2023 issue of the New Statesman, Burning down the House of Windsor