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Image by Caroline Forbes

Secret Papers

Secret Papers

Something has splayed
the oak trunk in a dozen knotted tongues.

Nobody heard
the sound it made: would its song,

pure air and fire,
have split the ear?

Or might a tree
slip from its bark

quietly
as a girl steps from her clothes

to stand, stripped to the skin,
secret papers burnt?

Everything conspired.
A singling-out occurred.


from The Sinking Road (Bloodaxe Books, 2008), © Paul Batchelor 2008, used by permission of the author and the publisher.

Recordings

Paul Batchelor Reading from his Poems

1Secret Papers

2Tree Climbing

3Honesty

4Amaryllis Johnsonii

5Butterwell

6Blodeuwedd

7Artemis

8To a Halver

9from The Anatomy Lesson: 1, 3, 6

10To Photograph a Snow Crystal

11Triage

12Lebiyska Mova

13Keening

14A Treat

15Consider the Starlings

16from Tristia: 1, 4, 6

17Conurbation

18Snow Melt

19from Findings: 1, 2, 5

20Comeuppance

21Suibne Recalls his Freedom

22Suibne Returns to Éorann

23Suibne in the Trees

24Moran's Daughter

25The Butcher's Daughter

26Wild Angelica

27The Damned

Books by Paul Batchelor