Tuesday Poem: ‘This Poem’ by Lindsay Pope

This poem

This poem does not belong to me.
It rides on the smile of the postman.
As his clipped cuffs brush the chain
his wheels purr up your street.

This poem does not belong to me.
It is lost in the postman’s satchel,
a letter that has no signature,
a butterfly sealed in its cocoon.

This poem does not belong to me.
If you need it, steam it open
with your breath, then unfold
yourself. It is addressed to you.

When I asked Pope for a bio he said: “Lindsay has spent most of his life living in a house of numbers but a recent internment at IIML displaced some old theorems and fostered some latent word play” but I wanted to know more so I decided to do some digging. According to Google, Pope’s recent work has been “informed by the human history of New Zealand’s sub-Antarctic islands” and that his poem ‘Dunedin, 1956’ won the NZ Poetry Day challenge to include all three New Zealand Post Book Award poetry finalists in a poem. You can see this poem on Beattie’s Book Blog. See more of Lindsay’s work on Turbine, Swamp and Blackmail Press 27.

You can enjoy other Tuesday Poems on the Tuesday Poem Blog.

4 thoughts on “Tuesday Poem: ‘This Poem’ by Lindsay Pope

  1. This is a classic Lindsay poem. Brooding and quietly romantic. I like it a lot! (Lindsay is also a talented mathematician which explains the displaced theorems.)

  2. Hi Lindsay,
    This is another great poem. It has echoes of Dunedin 1956 with the postman’s ‘clipped cuffs’. How do you remember these details?

  3. I like the precision of the images of the postman and of the letter. I like the repeated first line. Lindsay has a very distinct voice – often there’s a sort of sadness about his poems, but they often make me smile at the same time.

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