Wrap a sheepskin hand around the neck
To keep the ghosts out
Spectral fingers that numb the nape
Snap-freeze the apple
And frost in the hollow where black grass creeps

Not quite the Moorish summers of yesteryear
Gypsy blood feuds, bright and sticky like the oranges of Valencia
Tossed roses and clapping hands
Maracas on the battlements
Toreadors with long steel blades
Singing death

Pull wool over soles to keep the fire in
Swaddle the stabilisers
Dress the arch

Not quite the rising sun of spring
Weathered serfs and holy thatch
Stomach fire from clear measures
And muddy water boiled with yeast


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