Bathtime Reading (5)


He reads the great verses, in the bath.
His body unwinds, thoughts fill his mind.

Denise Levertov savours plum and quince;*
tells of tasting, living, in “O Taste and See”.
Peach blossoms intoxicate Li-Young Lee.*

Oh yes, he thinks, catch sensation on the wing.
Transfix it, preserve it, ever-anew;
that’s what he must try; what a poet should do.

He reads on; dogged, ageing, unafraid.
The fragrance of his bath foam disperses and fades . . .


*Denise Levertov: “O Taste and See”
*Li-Young Lee: “From Blossoms”

Having recently completed a sequence of seven poems on the subject of reading anthologies of poetry whilst relaxing in a warm bath, I realized – looking back at recent posts in this blog – that I had inadvertently omitted number five in the sequence.  The final one in the sequence – number seven – will appear in a few weeks.

Readers of this blog might be interested to know that I also write short stories, which are available at


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