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27Apr

Poem of the week: The New Divan by Edwin Morgan

To mark what would have been his 100th birthday, three pieces from his 100-part ‘war poem’ that is also about a forbidden love

Three poems from The New Divan

1.
Hafiz, old nightingale, what fires there have been
in the groves, white dust, wretchedness,
how could you ever get your song together?
Someone stands by your tomb, thinks
as a shadow thinks: much, little, any?
You swore you’d be found shrouded in another
grave-cloth of pure smoke from a heart as
burning dead as beating but the names
of cinders are thick where passions were.
Whole cities could be ash. But
not the song the Sufi says we have
but our dying song, you knew, gives us our beings.

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