Poems

David Dalton: ‘Occasionally Incomparable’

Occasionally Incomparable “We meet members of Thomson’s circle which, in his later years, was distinguished chiefly for the presence of the occasionally incomparable William Collins.”                            —Michael Schmidt, “The Lives of the Poets” To be beyond compare’s no simple thing— Even once. It’s tough perfecting a skill With no less than ten thousand hours to fill— Like water, its surface barely rippling While deeper levels are plumbed and charted; Growing as waves, swelling through stiff oceans To rise and smash in foaming explosions, Concussing any dreamers out of bed. History disposed of Thomson neatly By letting his name slip into…

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