Too Spare, Too Fierce, a new collection of love poems and elegies, is the twenty-second volume of poetry Patrick Lane - hailed as "the best poet of his generation" - has produced during his 30-year career as a writer.
TOO SPARE, TOO FIERCE When the dawn is large enough you will go out into that stiff blue and find a cat's paw in the bird bath, a gift from the crow to morning. There was a moment last night when you started walking the iron rail in your bare feet on the bridge above the river and you believed you wouldn't fall. Now, this morning, you shake so badly you can't hold the glass, lowering your face to it, your tongue a tick grey muscle trying to drown. Outside, mosquito larvae dance among the claws and the little red cords where the birds come to bathe. Old crow, I will come as soon as I can. THE ARTIST These are the shapes he wants, the map of the wilderness he searches in, the driftwood he finds shaped into beasts that are his dreams, the broken weathered to reemblance by some wind inside his mind, the imagined mountain in the stone he climbs, the peace he feels before descent.