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Robin Houghton #quirkychristmas and a very happy Christmas from the shed

Father Reindeer

He came to us over the leads –
a connoisseur of chimneys
and gnarly parapets –

he slid between church roofs,
ground his joints on mossy tiles
while pinnacling.

For the joy of each chase down
he endured the up, chiseling
hoof-holds in slate,

following twizzles of breath
blown from his brothers’
nostrils up front.

He never looked down to the bald
tops of trees or roads asleep,
the town’s grotesquerie.

Over the sky parlours, chequers
and marlipins he came, over
the weather vanes,

toeing the gutters and leaping
from gable-ends to bring us each
a tangerine,

a walnut in its knobbly shell,
a book of Aesop’s Fables to read
by torchlight.

 

Robin Houghton has been published widely in magazines including Poetry News, The Rialto, Antiphon, Mslexia, Brittle Star, Prole, Ink, Sweat & Tears, Obsessed with Pipework and Agenda. She won the 2012 New Writer poetry competition, the 2013 Hamish Canham Prize and the 2014 Stanza Competition, the latter with a poem that was nominated for the Forward Prize for Best Single Poem. Her pamphlet ‘The Great Vowel Shift’ was published in 2014 by Telltale Press, a poets’ publishing collective she helped establish. Robin has written three commissioned books on blogging, and her poetry blog is www.poetgal.co.uk.

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