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||Edwin Drood's Column
||23 April 2013
|While Edwin takes a hike we take another leaf from Hugh Featherstone's tree.|
They tore you out of Africa
your ivory, your ebony, your acre of mahogany
indeed, the very echo of your shape
and cabled copper of your strings
to mantovani here
Tinkling through the cocktail hour
while no one listened, you, who once went ape
in the jazz years, christened with champagne
arpeggio showers pearling down like rain
among the sow's ears and the silken purses
Born of a continent none could save
you braved the globe on ocean liners
glasses slid across your lid
as you ‘Brittannia’d through the waves
amid the classy, greenish diners
Later they repaired the bruises
moved you inland, still you sailed on
your hotel beached in these bijoux streets
where already we moved to a different beat
you chimed the smallest hours till they were gone
Now here you gleam in sleep, a hearse
knee-deep in the lugubrious parlour
this atrium has since become
silence clinging to your velvet robe
caught in the cream beam of my verse
Last exile in Sinatra Park
you hoard your resonance like a grave
a shroud of wealthy, musty dark
those yellowed keys all locked away
long dentures in their felted home
I lounge, discretely, by your tomb
and dream the final stave
From Bird under water, a selection of poems by Hugh Featherstone
© Hugh Featherstone
Another poem from this selection will appear next time the Drood's away.
The Bird under water homepage includes a foreword by Hugh Featherstone
and a linked list of the poems as they appear.
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