About the poet
Philip Gross was born in Delabole, north Cornwall, as the only child of a wartime Displaced...
Flying Down Wales
The wind bucks
but it doesn’t refuse us
— does us no favours either,
no more than it would a moderately
The land, though, gives little away
from bird height.
(Swans, calmly rowing,
aren’t unknown at 20,000 feet.)
Not dark yet, but the edges of things
begin to blur
as age will loosen our grip first on names,
then on all definition…
We track down the knobble-
back spine of a difficult country —
in the grey, the sun withheld, till all at once
every tarn, stream-
capillary, oxbow and stippling
reed-bed, each least bog-seep is gold-
is fire-spill from the smelting furnace. Or
say: we see
what the birds see
with their thousand miles to fly
and steering by the flicker-compass
in the genes: the stateless
state of water, on the frontier between day and night.
from Later (Bloodaxe, 2013), © Philip Gross 2013, used by permission of the author and the publisher
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