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Image by Caroline Forbes

The Carrion Crow

The Carrion Crow

A carrion crow sat on an oak
And watched where the line of battle broke.

A carrion crow sat on an ash -
He hears the spears' and shields' clash.

A carrion crow sat on a pine:
The long-bows are bent, the swift arrows whine.

A carrion crow sat on an elm:
The broad sword batters the bright-plumed helm.

A carrion crow sat on a yew:
On Bosworth Field lies a crimson dew.

A carrion crow sat on a thorn,
Where the crown of England had rolled, forlorn.


from Collected Poems (Carcanet, 1988), copyright © John Heath-Stubbs 1988, used by permission of the author.

Recordings

John Heath-Stubbs Reading from his poems

1Mozart

2Purkis

3A Crow in Bayswater

4Christus Natus Est

5The Frog and the Nightingale

6Wishes for the Months

7The Lady’s Complaint

8Girl with Marionettes

9Plato and the Waters of the Flood

10When Sappho Loved

11The Timeless Nightingale

12The Poet of Bray

13Inscription for a Scented Garden for the Blind

14The Tree-Creeper

15The Carrion Crow

16The Stonechat

17The Blackcap

18Ibycus

19Song of the Death-Watch Beetle

20Flea

21Inscription for a Sundial

22A Jellicle Cat

23The Mulberry Tree

24The Ghost of Gruesome Towers

25A Ballad of the Piltdown Man

26At the Dylan Thomas Centre, Swansea

27A Ballad of Trafalgar Square

28Sonnet

29Ockham’s Razor

30A Christmas Rose

Books & cds by John Heath-Stubbs