Silence at night is a blank hex
something never meant. A ragged
breath was meant to be our white noise –
our cousins holding each other
The grass (which I imagine long
and paper thin, the pelt of earth)
is carving the air into noise
under the hectic stars. And we
lie rumbling and vibrating each
time the sun collapses, and all
the other times as well, our beat
and breath the bellows of our heat.
Our hearing is still a tension
that can hear. The walls just standing
in their cold brick heart, we have called
tinnitus. The whine of our gears
and the ruckus of our machines
– the fingernails, the comfort rub
of a duvet against toes, as
the delicate attention bears
upon the slightest thing, leaving
reams and reams of analysis
of the breath’s passage in the nose
and the roaring brain in the dark
Waiting to explain the contrast
between the blue of the night sky
whose soft storm tufts sail past the star
and the crisp orange of my lamp
and it’s now midnight exactly.
Trying to avoid the back pain,
I describe the warm oranges
and defined black shadows against
the world outside which is not crisp
and rarely defined. Then, onset
of paranoia regarding
that star. It slipped into the text
with no fanfare, but its crisp haze
zeroes in like the silence when
almost deafened after a bang.
It’s watching me, from across space.
Maybe it’s trying to warn me.
The specifics of range and tone
doubtless contain enough data
just to fix this pain and be done.
On the shores of the white star, sand
pours and dreams around blank oceans –
a lone deckchair waits for me there
and a coconut with a straw
I can’t wait to fall asleep, soft
and slow as a cloud dispersing.
With that ache and contrast shift where
things disappear and become blur,
words disconnect and disengage
and the images dance amongst
the silence. When mouths open, then
the silence deepens. I can’t find
the werewithal to concentrate.
I am a lizard with a tongue
slipping out fast to taste the air
in a desert and my light muse
water has been destroyed by sun
scratching its fingers over all,
leaving hot and cracked marks. Scuttle
into shadow, and soon the cold
is within. I can’t think to do
anything. I lie in the warm
glow of the new LED bulb
and stare at the ceiling. The word
approaches when, failing to find
my muse, I fall backwards in the
dark, and the she catches my shoulders
in an eldritch trust exercise
I fear the dark, like anyone
that grows along the surface like
moss. Dear friend, I fear I am done
writing outside of fashion
and that is life. Lichen grows in
me, letting out its frost tendrils.
I am clean and clear throughout when
I have the better understood
moments. But to reach those I need
suns and locales I am far from.
I am out beyond the long range
of the beautiful. Juxtapose
this evening, alone, and unpained,
with an evening we knew by sea
where I had pain, yes, but also
peace. I live, now, to reach that peace.
Moss, you will note, is oft unsung.
Though it arrives first, and fastens
black rock for the later aeons
who soon forget it. I lie here
reaching for soft Erato’s hair,
or the bend of her ear, to breathe
whispers and promises of things
she wants me to do for her yet
Sometimes, particularly after bouts of prolonged unspecified pain, sometimes I feel like my body isn’t mine as my lips tingle and a virus makes its lonely way.
I lie, hot under the sheets and think of manipulating your body, the soft human fur over the slightly sweat-damp skin, the malleable hardness of your skeleton and its firm muscular grammar, I imagine grasping you and laying you on top of me like a pillow or a cat, and it is a sweet dream, as sweet as the dream that first drew together the word sweet, the sweet of bittersweet, and dream, the dream you can’t tell is unreal, and never want to wake up, this sweet and this dream, together. And I imagine or hear your voice singing, please, please, in all languages, over and over ’til your eyes pierce me and I burst.
If I am desired in my dreams with no resentment, then it is possible. I have reached a place of acceptance, where the moths land and scurry along my skin, and I watch them, feeling love. Later as I lie gazing into the sky I watch unfold a vast pink rose on a teal field where the night stretches over like a duvet tent, and everything seems okay.
Two cats curl up
in a seat
with a blue patterned cover
and under that cover
there is a crumpled up bed-sheet
and as they curl up
the white patches of their fur
make a kind of broken up blob
which someone (not me)
might call a heart.
I look, and then
I lie down in bed
and I don’t look at the empty side
of the bed