Mark Rutter





At the hour of long shadows, the sun
lights up the crown of the oak.
As Bashō lay dying, he told how his soul
still wandered the withered moor,
startled by the sound of a stream.

In the field, snow lit by starlight,
hollow stalks tick in the wind.  Overhead
a plane bound for the distant cities
writes its fading sentence.  The moments,
like frozen apples, cling to the branch.

October woods, full of burning houses
and disconsolate music.  A wing made
of many feathers, that is one second.
And one minute – a flock of song sparrows
migrating into skies of forgetfulness.


Mark Rutter’s poems have appeared in many magazines and anthologies, including Other Poetry, Magma, Interpreter’s House and London Magazine.  Two collections of his poems appeared in the US, where he lived from 1990-2002: The Farmhouse Voices (Puckerbrush), and water fir rook hand (Tatlin).

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