A poem to read in the bath… ‘Dunt’ by Alice Oswald #poetry

‘Dunt: A Poem for a Dried-Up River’ by Alice Oswald won the Forward Prize for the best single poem in 2007. A water nymph tries unsuccessfully to conjure a river from limestone. Punctuated by the refrain ‘try again’ it feels like a wail against climate change and our changing rural landscapes. The water nymph is real, rather it is an artefact found by Oswald in a local West Country museum.

Alice Oswald

Alice Oswald [photo Pako Mera]

Because of copyright restrictions I am unable to reproduce the poem in full, but please search it out in an anthology or at your local library.

‘Very small and damaged and quite dry,
a Roman water nymph made of bone
tries to summon a river out of limestone

very eroded faded
her left arm missing and both legs from the knee down
a Roman water nymph made of bone
tries to summon a river out of limestone’


Alice Oswald

Read this interview in The Guardian as Oswald talks about this collection.

Read these other excerpts, and perhaps find a new poet to love:-
Winter Song’ by Wilfred Owen
My Heart Leaps Up’ by William Wordsworth
Tulips’ by Wendy Cope

And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet:
A #poem to read in the bath: ‘Dunt’ by Alice Oswald https://wp.me/p5gEM4-3Rf via @SandraDanby

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