how they glide on an ocean
those stick-men and women in suspense
on surrendered snowflakes
they abase themselves to blades,
their pressure, cutting swathes
in arcs. A ballet for butchers
Those slopes. No place for feint hearts
for those that can, will, take a tilt at heaven
and those that can’t will tumble
on the white-down drawn tight
as a sheet raised around the mountain’s flank
in that rare air
accentuating the blue above
Below, in the cleave of the valley
patience waits for spring
to draw down the melt and wash away
the lost and lingering shapes
their whispers and screams
their murmurs, echoes and endearments
as colours regain the heights
A virgin’s flight complete
Melodic slap of dripping water
the sigh of an old door complaining in the hall
the dog dreams in her basket
a mother calls
a father winces
two lovers kiss
a red slash in the sky of excited molecules
and in the desert, sand accepts the heat
while foreign tongues curve and stroke their given air
We are in the domain of otherness
a bird lays a line against
the blue or grey circumference of doubt
for the sky, it’s sheets draw inexorably
toward the night
and that absence of light
that pulls a curtain on the day
Deep space will offer it’s dome
to those of us who oblige the moon
obeying rituals and cycles
we have come to know
amid those rumours of your day
that heaven steers toward the pillow
The waking dreams will flap
like washing on a line
hoping to succumb
in the still and calm of sleep
In that orbit of the resting eye
the universe is brave, unbounded
until the day intrudes again
to support some foolish notion of flight.
Sounds coming up to us. These narrow streets
funnel the noise and amplify it somehow, though not aggressively.
Just daily life. Unaffected.
Take it or leave it discourse.
The rubbing along of a more or less polite society
It is music I think. An opera. Small voices confiding.
A mother and daughter. Then the strident tones of a trader.
Rumbling of wheels on the flagstones and sweeping
that sometimes imitates the washing of the sea.
Sea rising in sympathy with troubled air and the moon
and dancing with feathered caps as it races toward the shore
where it rests and tells stories to the incoming waves.
Then they all re-group somehow with an inward suck
and slink back to the great body of water before returning
with fresh stories that only fishermen can attempt to interpret.
Then hasty steps and furtive steps. The drill of some pneumatic tool
and of course the declamatory siren of a car alarm from time to time.
Patrice and I. We in our pools of quiet reflection are content
to sit naked and inconspicuous yet so close to all of the life going on.
We make plans slowly and wonder if we should have another cup of tea.
Soft pillows on a breeze
Roll across the blue drape,
curtain of beyond
We are clung hard by gravity
To the still surface of our world
Imagining. Always a little short
The obvious is always staring
Large and blunt
At my inadequacy
The bookmaker smug in money
And I in self-pity. In fear
For sadness is lost time
I cannot inhabit that
Not all day. Not every day
So I would rather
Blush beneath my host
And live well in the weather.
Sobering to think
We only need
To ignite a spark
‘Only’ is preposterous
We angle at
A magic trick
The sleek back of a bullet
In that ‘seized moment’
We are aligned
Past and future present
A marvellous particle
Immaculate on the back
And so we come and go