Another Life

How the moment is still
and hangs under the eaves
like the mythological ice

your future melts,
ash is on the grate
ash blows upon the world’s face.

All the plans become
never to be done
and life, moving on
as one would expect,
moves on.

I drive down to the valley floor
and follow the river
of cars, a tear, a tear

Four Years

That makes four years I’ve been keeping this blog now. Thanks for everyone who’s liked or commented, you are appreciated. It’s always worth doing, when you think something deserves it. It feels like a small kiss from the universe, especially during a cold, rainy island winter. It helps me to know that some people, somewhere, consider some of these poems to be successes, in some way. Which is beautiful.

V.70

Oh please please please let me not step
on snails any more, it provokes
moments of panic and questions.
Like what makes a snail the lesser?

We all squirm and have our dark shells.
Entire belief systems are crushed,
just like that. By small accident.
If the snail doesn’t matter, then…

My hopes and dreams bypass the snail
and I can live in a dream world
beyond, where political talk
never betrays anyone. Where

good men are honoured. Good people.
There once was a world where good reigned.
The demons got bored and planned coups.
Death meant nothing to them. They ran

in the streets screaming slanderous
screams that cut the good buildings down.
They wrote newspapers and chattered
in their odd logic, disregarding

tears, emotions. They thought little.
They rolled around in little shells
like a physical process, then
I knew. I was better than them.

Aphorisms 1

Often, the cry of the cynic is one of jealousy towards hope

*

When someone gives up on a joint project, it takes on the features of glass – cold and transparent. And behind it you see the back of the one who left. If the joy you shared was real, the project will feel emptied by their disavowal.

*

I love it when it rains, I love it more walking in rain, living it. I love thinking on the memory of a good storm, but sometimes that is easier than going out and making new memories of the storm happening right now, outside.

*

There is something beautiful in taking something meant as an insult, and wearing it as a badge of honour. It throws light back up the ass of the insulter.

*

A translation is an excuse to write something new under another authority.

*

“Whatever such a mind sees is the flower, and whatever such a mind dreams of is the moon.” A state we should strive for, so long as we remember that, not only beautiful, still, and peaceful, the flower has the nesting insect, eating it from the inside out. And the moon is bright, and hangs outside of our world, but lunar craters are cold, dead and sterile.

*

In poetry it is sometimes easy to look for crunchy language, rather than a true picture, or letting one build its surface over the other. But then, capturing things is not the kind of thing language does, like a graph, or a sum, or a photograph, despite these all having their subjective aspects, or hardly capturing anything at all. It evokes, but must evoke on the terms of the reader. But do I do any of this? Do I even think it when I’m writing?

*

The writing feels right, it isn’t like what has already been said. Some of the language that comes is new, in new ways, some of it is couched in dull or dead forms, which have to be revised. But what does this feeling of ‘needing revision’ consist of? Of resentment, of defining the succesful in terms of what I am not? Not old, not hackneyed, not used up? Writing a poem is equal parts what I like, or think is successful, and what I don’t like about what I have written, what is unsuccessful. It can’t just be one or the other. And it can be more. Sometimes I feel nothing about a sentence. Does that matter?

*

Resentment as a concept, a superiority of approach, defining yourself against Them, ‘what they do is bad and I don’t like it’, this concept has a lot to do with how taste develops. And this is okay, so long as we know it.

Yes

The rock will weather the human storm
And aeons hence will thrive still
Over the cold mountain, the clouds arise
And the gold sun.

We may not have been together in life
but rock does not hesitate to fall.
Our dust will mingle
under the red sun.

I have lived as all have lived
with the infinite collapse of things.
I have loved, and will love still
and soundless in the darkness.

You know who you are, my friends.
I sing your song forever
I chant the requiem and praise
of the bright world.

Zodiac

I

Your week this week will go off
like a rotten egg. Such is life.
This fragment of a year will crack
and spill all over you, achieve

new heights of boredom and disgust.
Why? Do you ask why the fungus
grows at the tree’s base and grows
rotten? Come on. Just accept it

like you accept that your eyes
will look where you decide
and not just swing around like
billiard balls in a washing machine.

Next week brings with it new challenges
as exactly the same thing happens
for the hundred and eleventh time.
But this one, this is the one, I can feel it.

II

The stars are spread out in the orrery
like thick yeast extract on toast.
Things are everywhere finding it difficult
to connect. Take Bellatrix

for example. A salty taste on the tongue
just don’t let it touch an open cut.
Inside this emptiness of pain feeling
there is another expanse of tiny stars.

From each new star, we see new constellations
and the red bloom in Orion
is aching to reach them.
Close one eye for a while and things look flat.

There are an endless array of bears in the sky
clouds, atoms, birds, planes, galaxies –
all of these are bears if you look closely.
This week will bring bears.

Continue reading

Notes Towards a Definition of Mind

A spiderweb woven in a corner
– warm and damp corner
and as time passes, it loses spans
and falls until it is almost torn

And another spider comes
and builds another web
almost but not quite exact
to the plan of the old web

and this repeats
hundreds and hundreds of times
until looking from the corner of your eye
you think you see crystal
seas receding