Roy Fisher

Image by Caroline Forbes



As I expounded The Man With the Blue Guitar
my students outwitted me.

Eyes glazed, or averted, they declined
to pick up a single question,
forcing me to drone alone. I was so boring
I fell asleep.

Then a little way off
through the opaque white screens in my head
I started to make out a voice.
It was expounding The Man With the Blue Guitar.

Startled, I awoke, talking. Seven stanzas it had taught
without any prompting from me. Though curious,
I still didn't have enough gall
to check its performance from anybody's notes.

from The Long and the Short of It: Poems 1995-2005 (Bloodaxe, 2005), copyright © Roy Fisher 2005, used by permission of the author and Bloodaxe Books Ltd.


Roy Fisher

Roy Fisher Reading from his poems

1At the Grave of Asa Benveniste

2The House on the Border

3Near Garmsley Camp

43rd November 1976

5They Come Home


7Top Down, Bottom Up

8Abstracted Water

9Birmingham River

10The Host

11Promenade On Down

12The Collection of Things

13The Lesson in Composition

14Butterton Ford

15The Burning Graves at Netherton


17The Six Deliberate Acts

18Three Ceremonial Poems

19Handsworth Liberties

20Staffordshire Red

21The Trace

22The Sidings at Drebkau

23Discovering the Form

24You Should Have Been There