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Legion Wins Forward

David Harsent, pictured here, has just won this year's Forward Prize for best collection of poetry. The T.S. Review heartily congratulates him for his most-deserved win, and all other winners (as well as those on the short-list).

The book is called Legion - a poem from which appeared in 100 Poets Against The War, which David Harsent kindly supported - he has also read for the Oxfam series I organize.

The Forward poetry prizes are "the most vaulable" in the UK and are widely respected among poets.

The prize for best poem of the year (published in a UK journal) goes to Paul Farley (who recently read for Oxfam as well in a brilliant show of mind over wine and codeine).

Please see the poem below.

Liverpool Disappears for a Billionth of a Second

Shorter than the blink inside a blink
the National Grid will sometimes make, when you'll
turn to a room and say: Was that just me?

People sitting down for dinner don't feel
their chairs taken away/put back again
much faster than that trick with tablecloths.

A train entering the Olive Mount cutting
shudders, but not a single passenger
complains when it pulls in almost on time.

The birds feel it, though, and if you see
starlings in shoal, seagulls abandoning
cathedral ledges, or a mob of pigeons

lifting from a square as at gunfire,
be warned, it may be happening, but then
those sensitive to bat-squeak in the backs

of necks, who claim to hear the distant roar
of comets on the turn - these may well smile
at a world restored, in one piece; though each place

where mineral Liverpool goes wouldn't believe
what hit it: all that sandstone out to sea
or meshed into the quarters of Cologne.

I've felt it a few times when I've gone home,
if anything, more often now I'm old,
and the gaps between get shorter all the time.

poem by Paul Farley
(as found on The Guardian Internet site)
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