The Yew Walk

What is the distance

between us, you said

when we slept naked

but barely touched;

the quilt thrown back,

streaks of moth-dust

across your breast.


That night I dreamt

you brushed against

the trees of the yew-walk;

the strange fine pollen dust

shook out,

sifted most eerily

inside your dress.


I do not know

why its green-gold

so long unloosed

kindled your nakedness –

or why I woke to kiss

the estranging dust

the single flesh.

from The Lady and the Hare: New and Selected Poems (Bloodaxe, 2003), © Pauline Stainer 2003, used by permission of the author and the publisher.

Pauline Stainer in the Poetry Store

The free tracks you can enjoy in the Poetry Archive are a selection of a poet’s work. Our catalogue store includes many more recordings which you can download to your device.