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Poem introduction

There have been quite a few stories and films and poems which have trains as their background but there haven't been so many about planes, so I thought that I should have a plane poem.

Landing

Landing
for Elizabeth

They sparkle beneath our wings;
spilt jewel caskets, lights strewn
in rich darkness, lampstrings of pearls.

And then the plane tilts, a warm
intimate thrumming, like travelling within
the ambergris-heavy belly of a whale.

The abstract beauty of our world;
gleams anvilled to a glowing grid,
how the floor of earth is thick inlaid!

Traffic borne, lotus on a stream,
planes lofting, hovering, descending,
kites without strings, as I race homewards

towards you, beside whom I now belong,
age iam, meorum finis amorum
my late, but final anchoring.


from Collected Poems (Gallery Press, 1995) © John Montague 1995, used by permission of the author and The Gallery Press.

Recordings

John Montague Reading from his Poems

1Like Dolmens Round my Childhood, the Old People

2Woodtown Manor

3The Trout

4All Legendary Obstacles

5That Room

6The Same Gesture

7Omagh Hospital

8The Water Carrier

9A Bright Day

10A Grafted Tongue

11Dowager

12Courtyard in Winter

13No Music

14Last of the House

15Herbert Street Revisited

16Grave Song

17Last Journey

18A Response to Omagh

19Wrath

20There are Days

20The Family Piano

22Landing

23Slievemore

Books & cds by John Montague