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24 January 2024

The NS Poem: The Fall

A new poem by Ben Wilkinson

By Ben Wilkinson

This year, resolve to be more like the sloth: 
that slow, slinking, blinking bag of fur 
whose claws and eye makeup are pure goth. 

They hug each firm bough as if it were 
a home, held beyond the hurry of our kind, 
or doggy-paddle off the sapphire coast 

to no end but endless time. Good as blind 
to the day’s harsh glare, knowing almost 
everywhere by mind map, feel, and sniff alone. 

You might commit hours to climb and climb 
this swaying cecropia, reaching a crown 
of leaves to munch, then, eccentric mime, 

mistake your own arm for a branch to dive 
fifty feet unhurt. Wouldn’t that be the life.

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Ben Wilkinson’s latest collection of poetry is “Same Difference” (Seren Books)

[See also: The NS Poem: Weirdos]

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This article appears in the 24 Jan 2024 issue of the New Statesman, The Tory Media Wars