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    [ID] => 21274
    [post_author] => 23
    [post_date] => 2020-12-04 12:59:13
    [post_date_gmt] => 2020-12-04 12:59:13
    [post_content] => A sunlight-mottled river shunts its weight
Towards the sea, having nowhere else to go;
Even the evening’s syrupy light can’t glaze it
Into something pretty. The days are slow,

So I come back often to this crease in the city’s palm,
Where you might see a rabbit stare from the gorse
Then vanish as quick to its deep, unseeable home,
Like a coin you’ve slipped between the floorboards.

My sadness is small amongst the river’s slithering moods
Where nothing means except the thought-clean flow
Of browns and greens and occasional newspaper shreds
And dragonflies ruffling the water where they flew.

Hollow redbrick warehouses discuss themselves,
Towering and useless, lit up by the low-hanging sun,
The windows shimmering pockets of gold like scales.
They used to make leather, or seatbelts, or chewing gum.

Above me, the cars glide quietly across a bridge.
They’re small enough to hold, up there near the moon.
Here at the river’s slow, unglistening edge
Where nobody knows me at all, I’m clean as a bone.
    [post_title] => In Praise of Desolation
    [post_excerpt] => 
    [post_status] => publish
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    [post_name] => in-praise-of-desolation
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    [post_modified] => 2020-12-04 12:59:13
    [post_modified_gmt] => 2020-12-04 12:59:13
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    [guid] => https://poems.poetrysociety.org.uk/?post_type=poems&p=21274
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            [wpcf-published-in] => 
            [wpcf-date-published] => 2020
            [wpcf-summary-description] => This poem is commended in the People Need Nature challenge, set and judged by Gboyega Odubanjo on Young Poets Network in 2020.

William writes about his poem: “This poem came from walking down to a river near where I live in Bristol one evening. It is quite a muddy river, surrounded by abandoned, graffitied buildings; hardly sublime or poetic, but something about that ‘depressing’ environment was also uplifting, because I felt like a lone explorer in that moment, even with other people dotted about. The abandoned buildings and the flowing river also seemed to suggest some bigger picture beyond myself.”
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            [wpcf-poem-award] => Commended, People Need Nature challenge
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    [poet_data] => stdClass Object
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            [ID] => 19561
            [forename] => 
            [surname] => 
            [title] => William Snelling
            [slug] => william-snelling
            [content] => William is commended in Gboyega Odubanjo's People Need Nature challenge on Young Poets Network in 2020 and the 2019 poetry translation challenge with Modern Poetry in Translation, judged by Clare Pollard. He is also the third-prize winner of the 2018 August Challenge #1 on prose poems on Young Poets Network and is commended in the Golden Shovel challenge, judged by Peter Kahn.
        )

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    [ID] => 19561
    [forename] => 
    [surname] => 
    [title] => William Snelling
    [slug] => william-snelling
    [content] => William is commended in Gboyega Odubanjo's People Need Nature challenge on Young Poets Network in 2020 and the 2019 poetry translation challenge with Modern Poetry in Translation, judged by Clare Pollard. He is also the third-prize winner of the 2018 August Challenge #1 on prose poems on Young Poets Network and is commended in the Golden Shovel challenge, judged by Peter Kahn.
)

In Praise of Desolation

William Snelling

A sunlight-mottled river shunts its weight
Towards the sea, having nowhere else to go;
Even the evening’s syrupy light can’t glaze it
Into something pretty. The days are slow,

So I come back often to this crease in the city’s palm,
Where you might see a rabbit stare from the gorse
Then vanish as quick to its deep, unseeable home,
Like a coin you’ve slipped between the floorboards.

My sadness is small amongst the river’s slithering moods
Where nothing means except the thought-clean flow
Of browns and greens and occasional newspaper shreds
And dragonflies ruffling the water where they flew.

Hollow redbrick warehouses discuss themselves,
Towering and useless, lit up by the low-hanging sun,
The windows shimmering pockets of gold like scales.
They used to make leather, or seatbelts, or chewing gum.

Above me, the cars glide quietly across a bridge.
They’re small enough to hold, up there near the moon.
Here at the river’s slow, unglistening edge
Where nobody knows me at all, I’m clean as a bone.