About the Poem
Taken from the book
About the poet
Pauline Stainer is an English poet, born in Burslem, Stoke-on-Trent. After attending St Anne's...
A Haze Held By Thorns
A jeweller's wheel cuts the constellations
above the circular garden
on the single canvas
the white doe folds her feet into tallowed alabaster;
the dancers pour their shawls
like glazes over the balustrade
beside the seven immaculate triangles of water,
the dead wear their trembler-springs
of hammered gold
the sun notches its arrow;
the pomegranate bleeds;
the virgin wears an ermine on her sleeve
the timbre of the light
a haze held by thorns,
a snakeskin still perfect over the eye.
How it burns back - the myrrh at noon -
the milk from the crushed nectaries
of her breasts -
and beyond the palings,
where the paired birds hang
on their frieze
walk into the crucifixion.
from The Lady and the Hare: New and Selected Poems (Bloodaxe Books, 2003), © Pauline Stainer, used by permission of the author and the publisher
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