Blackberry Eating

Blackberry Eating

I love to go out in late September
among the fat, overripe, icy, black blackberries
to eat blackberries for breakfast,
the stalks very prickly, a penalty
they earn for knowing the black art
of blackberry making; and as I stand among them
lifting the stalks to my mouth, the ripest berries
fall almost unbidden to my tongue,
as words sometimes do, certain peculiar words
like strengths or squinched or broughamed,
many-lettered, one-syllabled lumps,
which I squeeze, squinch open, and splurge well
in the silent, startled, icy, black language
of blackberry eating in late September.

from Selected Poems (Bloodaxe, 2001), copyright © Galway Kinnell 2001, used by permission of the author and Bloodaxe Books Ltd.

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1First Song

2The Avenue Bearing the Initial of Christ into the New World

3The Bear

4Lastness: Section 2

5Fergus Falling

6After Making Love We Hear Footsteps


8Blackberry Eating

9The Road Between Here and There

10The Olive Wood Fire

11The Fundamental Project of Technology


13When One Has Lived A Long Time Alone: parts 1, 7 & 9



16How Could She Not

17The Stone Table


19It All Comes Back