Daily Poem

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Peter Porter is the ninth of ten shortlisted poets for the TS Eliot Prize for best new collection of poetry. He came to England from Australia in 1951 and over the years has gained an enviable international reputation. This year's judges are Ciara n Carson, Candia McWilliam, John Fuller and Robert Crawford, chaired by Elaine Feinstein. Tomorrow will be the last of the shortlisted poets to be published in the Daily Poem before the winner is announced on 17 January and published here the day after.

This poem is from his collection Millennial Fables (Oxford University Press, £7.99.

Daily Poem

Address To The Stars By Peter Porter

These points of light which metaphors debate Disclose a separation so extreme Infinity awakens from its dream, A tongue-tied horizontal figure eight.

Since they are unimaginable, we Invert them till they shine through inner space: Up close they act as gods whose laws replace Extrapolation with sublimity.

O stars encompassed by our measurements, Your integers show where belief may build And adding noughts until the chart is filled Exchange eternity for immanence.