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previously published in Poetry Durham, Winter 88/89

in collection The Narrators,Jan 06, The Rack Press,
ISBN 0-9527217-1-0 / 978-0-9527217-1-0



The Narrators


From hand to hand they pass the polished stick;

the fire crackles, a dance of sparks is done

above the shifting tray of logs.


Their god is linear; he has an end

and a beginning; is unamused by plotless anarchy.


The stick is smooth with continuities,

anonymous hands, forgotten tellers

tonguing remembered tales.


Invention is sudden, like a leap of sparks:

it comes, it goes, delays the stick


but does not hold it back.

It was a branch, sap-sticky once,

in leaf before its cutting down.


Nicholas Murray


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e-mail Nicholas


listen: Nicholas reading
'A Plate
of Spaghetti'

and in the shop ...
collections -
"City LIghts",
"The Yellow Wheelbarrow"
Melos Press;

"A Winter Quartet"
"The Narrators"
The Rack Press


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