My wife

My wife. pic for poem

 

she lies naked on the bedroom floor

doing  yoga poses, utterly exposed

these are the moments I like best

one leg drawn into the waist

a scissor of flesh in soft light

the darker shape of body hair obscured

an ineluctable triangle of mute desire

and we talk and share this shared space

this one, of many, moments that accrue

to form a comfortable bond. a union of trust

then I will go and do something quite mundane, like

clean my teeth or make a cup of tea

as she unfurls in blind nakedness to stretch

into another pose that readies her for the day

that we go toward, together, as innocents

For Daf

For Daf

 

the clematis climbs in a hug

around the bushes and shrubs

and rises in a triumph around a conifer

like applause

A curtain call for this morning

while twin jet engines grind the air

on an ascending scale away from Heathrow

with a vow toward wherever it is they are promised

but down here, in our garden, I feel no resentment

not for the noise nor for those high flying dreams

because I am bound in this sumptuous scene

happy in May sunshine with cool air

on my naked skin,  newly cut grass glistening in the dew

and nothing much else to do

except perhaps to plant a kiss

on the cheek of a favoured friend

who has picked today, of all days

to celebrate

Scraps

Scraps. Poem photograph

They never fall

those spots of reason

on flesh drawn tight, in retreat

hauled about and withered

by fears stacked up

and winking at, no other way

because there was

no other way

not then.

But now a rush of rust on metal

those screech marks of decay

like time, bold on the eaten substance

would render beauty to a mind

so bidden

But,

lassitude allows mould

to fret and gather over

those dull accomplishments

and the question of;

what is this ache?

inherits the colour blue

that famous state

folk hero hue

that is a piece of mind gone flaky

an intimate knowledge

belonging to more than just the few.

Scraps.

it is always scraps

that in the end

are left

in view.

Never did

never-did

I never had authority, a uniform

so now, as age advances

and men in suits strut and utter

incoherent commands

I am more, not less confused

Their balance sheets and due diligence

find me straggling in a long column

of easily forgotten figures

wrapped in the inconvenient flag of conscience

But in that too there lacks an impetus

that will to fight has gone

and with it any hope

for the spoils of victory

The swagger of the coming man has gone

like a moon shadow

that softest of forms recedes

ambiguous in departure

from the territories of man and boy

going quietly to a greater dark

Long last the memory

Long last the memory.

I am returned
To the place where my self
Comes and goes

That self which knows
Only the journeys
Memories as sleights of hand

The physical being
A carapace
Lost in space

I am solid here
Amongst the debris
That roots and puts a roof on me

My flesh and blood
The beating tic
I represent

Alone as always
In familiarity
Asking forever to be known

Thames. River-side

Thames. River side

Thames. River side

I see the river and ache

I love this place

This manor, in which I am a lordly presence

Mine now and memories

But all the familiar smells

The scope of my nostalgia

This safety

Is it vanity?

Would I vouchsafe it all

Glibly, for golden sands in the Grenadines

Pose with chromatic lenses above a cocktail

Dream sweep a panorama “of it all”

In that am I shallow?

These feelings come to me

Disturb me because I need

Truth and beauty

I fear decay. Any wanton loss

Any light that shines upon

My frailty

All the lies and half-truths

That have bled from me

They are stains

Rust around the lettering

The messages I see.

A rider on the swells

A rider on the swells

A rider on the swells

So the poet in me speaks

Is this an accretion of sighs?

Or has today given me spoils,

an accretion of smiles?

I am forever riding the crests of waves

Being sucked under and below

Roiling back and forth

On an incessant tide

That rides with a roar

And recedes with a screech

Leaving me naked

Abraded by events and thoughts

That linger or are lost

Are careless with me

Posing questions

Leaving a little occasional wisdom

On the simpering callousness of life

Or the warm glow of love

I am the given. I shall not resist

Though hark at me

When so many souls are perishing at sea.