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From The Frontier Of Writing

Seamus Heaney

The tightness and the nilness round that space 
when the car stops in the road, the troops inspect 
its make and number and, as one bends his face 
 
towards your window, you catch sight of more 
on a hill beyond, eyeing with intent 
down cradled guns that hold you under cover 
 
and everything is pure interrogation 
until a rifle motions and you move 
with guarded unconcerned acceleration— 
 
a little emptier, a little spent 
as always by that quiver in the self, 
subjugated, yes, and obedient. 
 
So you drive on to the frontier of writing 
where it happens again. The guns on tripods; 
the sergeant with his on-off mike repeating 
 
data about you, waiting for the squawk 
of clearance; the marksman training down 
out of the sun upon you like a hawk. 
 
And suddenly you're through, arraigned yet freed, 
as if you'd passed from behind a waterfall 
on the black current of a tarmac road 
 
past armor-plated vehicles, out between 
the posted soldiers flowing and receding 
like tree shadows into the polished windscreen. 



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Added: 30 Sep 2002 | Last Read: 19 Apr 2018 5:57 AM | Viewed: 13396 times

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URL: http://plagiarist.com/poetry/7113/ | Viewed on 19 April 2018.
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