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Wind-blown acanthus

The man was nearly blind; in six months would be dead.
I led him to the decorated chapel door.
Five hundred years had worked to soften and abrade
the clean, sharp patterns chased there by the mason’s blade.
He knew his stuff, though; with enquiring hands he read
the granite and, greeting an old friend’s face once more
after long absence, ‘Wind-blown acanthus,’ he said.

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Listen to this poem — read by the author