POEM Philip Gross

NWR Issue 112

The Breath of Things

escapes them: tight shuddery wheeze
of air brakes, no sooner applied
than insisted on, no sooner that than released
like a firm teacher’s grip on the class,
her flicker of I mean it.
(Tactful, mind you,
like a too-well-brought-up great aunt’s tiny sneeze.)

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Philip Gross is a poet, a playwright, librettist and writer for children. He won the TS
Eliot Prize 2009 with The Water Table, and Wales Book of The Year 2010 with I Spy Pinhole Eye. Recent collections, Deep Field and Later, dealt with his refugee father’s final years and loss of language. Philip leads the MPhil/PhD in Writing programme at the University of South Wales, where he is Professor of Creative Writing. A Fold In The River is a collaboration with artist Valerie Coffin Price (with Welsh translations under way by Cyril Jones) and appeared in 2015, as did Love Songs of Carbon, category winner of the Wales Book of the Year 2016. philipgross.co.uk.


previous poem: Back
next poem: The House in Tigre


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