Watercress, by Alasdair Paterson

18 September 2014

Another poem from Alasdair Paterson’s Brumaire and Later – see ‘Goose’ below for the context.


Out on their feet, the new recruits,
but they don’t want to sleep.
They’ll make a night of it, cajole
each other near that hideous border
they’ll some time need to cross alone.

The wine helps, maybe not the colour;
bitter salad’s plated up and meat
they sent for cooling in its juices.
They’ll have each other taste it all, roar
slogans and poor songs till lights out.

The border crossing into sleep tonight,
when they get there, will be a bridge
over a meander fat with bodies
that go bumping under, fifty, fifty one,
and so towards the watercress beds.

[Read in Brumaire and Later, published by Flarestack Poets.]


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