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22 December 2016

Poem: Apostle

"I hurd the storie & I tolde it back, / god-gifted, to spyce up the craic"

By Carol Ann Duffy

I hurd the storie & I tolde it back,

god-gifted, to spyce up the craic,

lyke a poet made it to synge- true

in the waye the worde-worlde is true.

Hosannah. Hallelujah. Holy.

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I sawe no Angels but I thought them- Men

of wynged Lighte- A Starre -& thenne & thenne . . .

I hurd the storie & I tolde it back,

god-gifted, to spyce up the craic,

lyke a poet made it to synge- true

in the waye the worde-worlde is true.

Hosannah. Hallelujah. Holy.

 

I sawe no Angels but I thought them- Men

of wynged Lighte- A Starre -& thenne & thenne . . .

Lovely in the saying, goodly, alle new

in the waye Soule to Bodye is new.

Holy. Hosannah. Hallelujah.

 

But the fishe I caught was wordless grayce

& the fyre to cooke it & the taste-

no neede to think & speake them true

to feede five thousand & thenne you.

Hallelujah. Holy. Hosannah.

 

Carol Ann Duffy is the Poet Laureate. “Apostle” appears in her anthology The Twelve Poems of Christmas: Volume Eight, published by Candlestick Press (£4.95).

This article appears in the 13 Dec 2016 issue of the New Statesman, Christmas and New Year special 2016