The Foliate Head is a gorgeous-looking little book with profuse green man art by Clive Hicks-Jenkins and design by Andrew Wakelin. I'll add some poems below so you may judge whether it is also good in other ways; there are a few on the page for the book as well.
Thank you to publisher Pete Crowther for asking for a book, and for allowing the threesome of me and Clive and Andrew to have our way with it! I'm very glad that it went into a second printing.
"Whan that Aprille with his shoures soote / The droghte of Marche hath perced to the roote, / And bathed every veyne in swich licour, / Of which vertu engendred is the flour," then we simply must have a poetry-month sale. (Thank you, Geoffrey Chaucer and Pete, again.)
PUCK IN SPRING
“I Heard Their Wings Like the Sound of Many Waters”
In the dark, in the deeps of the night that are
Crevasses of a sea, I heard their wings.
I heard the trickling of tiny feathers
With their hairs out like milkweed parachutes
Floating idly on the summer air,
I heard the curl and splash, the thunderbolts
Of pinions, the rapids and rattle of shafts—
Heard Niagara sweep the barreled woman
And shove her under water for three days,
I heard a jar of fragrance spill its waves
As a lone figure poured out all she could,
Heard the sky’s bronze-colored raindrops scatter
On corrugated roofs and tops of wells,
I heard the water-devil whirligigs,
I heard an awesome silence when the wings
Held still, upright as flowers in a vase,
And when I turned to see why they had stilled,
Then what I saw was likenesses to star
Imprisoned in a form of marble flesh,
With a face like lightning-fires and aura
Trembling like a rainbow on the shoulders,
But all the else I saw was unlikeness
That bent me like a bow until my brow
Was pressed against the minerals of earth,
And when I gasped at air, I tasted gold.