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Ian Pople, from Saving Spaces

A week of running beside the canal

On Monday, three yellow goslings
and the gander's tongue thrust out.
On Wednesday, three goslings,
each with a dark Mohican streak,
the gander's tongue thrust out.

A face comes back from
earlier times; freckled, round,
brown eyes, and red, fair hair,
nothing beyond the ordinary,
that always seems relaxed.

The gait below it; slightly
splayed and rolling.
On Thursday, suddenly
the may was open everywhere,
its small white clusters

like the rowan or cow parsley;
the florets twisted, flicking
on the breeze. On Sunday,
one upon the water, its head
tucked back beneath its wing;

the other adult bird was resting
by the bank, the water
rippling its drowned head.
Of the goslings, nothing.
On the canal, warm dots

of summer rain. Among
the grasses, Friesians walk
from grass to grass. That face
opens out upon itself; the bee's
feet touch the flower.