I know the kingfisher is only a blue brushstroke on the river’s surface,
A widowed swan knows also. The breeze is caught in a moment of reeds
As the cavillers crouched in the undergrowth awaiting a rallying drum.

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Those phrases, changed once, swirl in the mind;
We busy ourselves with sterling silver in small wooden boxes
And chess –

‘A most astute observation, Maynard’

‘A little more, Maynard?’

‘It’s your move…’

When he plays the flute, he descends the stairs
And we catch his eyes through the smoke
In a precise square of gold.

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