V.83

I am one with all the insects
that will one day eat my body –
when I have stopped, and am resting
in a sense, when resting is gone

I am one with the plants that grow
of me, in my head, in my trunk.
I will give to the cold flowers
what they once gave to me: a hope

I am one with the air I breathe
that will burn me and dissolve me
for aeons, my skeleton rests
until it too crumbles like cake

I am one with the diseases
that will grind me down, as my mind
flares and splutters like a damp flare
in the faint waves on the dark beach

I am one with the words of things
the vast and tangled forest where
nothing can change without changing
everything. My paths will go on

I am one with the small beings
that fizz in and upon my skin
with legs and arms and carapace
made of me. I will be made free

Collapse

In the winter sun I saw, a gold
forest of leafless trees appear
It was warm in the shower and the wind
could be heard at night on the eaves
I played games on the evening
and in the morning I played games
The tangle of ideas has become full
and the temptation arises of a sword
Stupid people say stupid things
and I cannot be sure of my difference
I cannot be sure of the world
but I can be sure of the deep house
I drink stimulants all day,
and in the morning I drink stimulants
My heart is a construct of ideas
of the faster beat and slower thought
I cannot be sure of my body,
my thoughts of my body are dark mirrors
I hold inside me a red liquid
I hold in my hands a rare earth element
In the winter sun I saw dirt on the screen,
and the night wind brought desert dust
I am a rare earth element, they know
my paranoia grows and shrinks in ceaseless
patterns I never see coming or going
It was warm in the shower as I heard
the guitar be generated by movement
The tangle of ideas is a symptom
of competing interests conceived as a whole
I cannot be sure of the political body
as its organs revolve, unconnected

*

In the stream of time games appear
and the faint sound of choirs
Things repeat and repeat and I hold
within me this repetition and outside
the wind flicks between warm and cold
I hold my loved ones close
I hold my hands clasped in the darkness
The answers I have found to crumble
and rebuild, and repeat only in torn
forms like recycled paper used for chips
or packing paper used to wrap objects
Words lie in ranks on the tablecloth
Connections form and are lost again,
being lines between lost things
In the christmas quiet I heard peace
In the blue fire of the hob,
small fragments of history gave us heat
The world is an organic simulation
Time pours through us and damages us.
The tangle of ideas rests in parallel lines
and smooths out the kind of fear we feel
The fire is warm on an evening
the sting of heat on my legs
the sound of ancient voices from my childhood
and far off trumpets and the brightness
Another year passes, I cope more easily
In the christmas quiet I heard peace

*

And what is there to say
when all stories are noise
and all stories are equal in their relation
to the void and what is there to say
and what is worth saying
when all words are noise and void
and all stories are at risk
From day to day I tumble from this mood to that
and often forget what I have said and believed
From day to day my purse grows lighter and heavier
From day to day the world goes darker
and darker and brighter and hotter

From day to day the clouds pass over the face of the sky
and the moon’s blank eye, and I
If they do not care to save the earth
why should we care for them?
If they do not care to save the earth
why should we care for them?

*

In the end, the sun enfolds the trees
and as I gaze at the page, it watches me
Collapse is a strange thing, it threatens,
but never quite finishes with us –
my heart is a construct of golden ideas
a web, a force, a soul, a sun tower
The future cannot help, but out of the present
it flowers, and we can help ourselves
In the sun, I see, a winter sun behind a sea
of branches, there where I lose myself
to find what there is to see

V.41

The submarine began to lilt.
Holding her small brass crucifix,
she felt the shudders progress through
to the copper veins of the ship.

Through the viewport the forest came
dark and blue with a thin dust skin
the woods at the deep of the world
thin rusted needles, a spike pit

where white eels passed into shadows
and the leaves were rotten and white.
It stretched on and on, looming out
of the black pressure, and crabs rose

from the murk only to hide where
the vessel’s pale light would not shine
on paler carapaces. Soon
the trees parted with a clearing.

She gasped at what the mystic girl
had shown. It was true. The bones lay
in the open, in vast white arcs.
And each bone was scarred and peppered –

harpoon heads embedded like black
stars in a pale cosmos, thousands.
The skull was cracked that crowned them there –
the soaring husk of the white whale!

I. 6×6, With Reference to Rain

A tree is falling down
somewhere, always – the bark
perhaps shed – no matter
whatever the state – all
trees fall at some time – or
decay takes them slowly

the point is – all that noise
all that lost feeling calls
out louder than grass growth
louder than the mushroom’s
creaking love of all life
ingesting – and bright plants

– they swarm in a dancing
wind and send small sermons
out from damp petals – out
in the clouded darkness
out in the beading rain
every single gold day.

There are arguments made –
witness the ant’s rebuke
to the flat earth’s respite
witness the air breathing
the whole flotilla in
and with a breath again

this shout of all star-fall.
Billion years refute still
longer still years – it’s mad
considering the dark
to look at this strong joy
at all this cafuffle

A plane beams – a car moans
a shed settles – notice;
while all this can be changed
there is still the moment
when you unwrap a gift
hear the rain’s soft shuffling

Walk to Bonaguil

Left the cold house and broke hastily through –
passed for a day over poster perfect fields
and the sun charged with us, freeing the air.
My friend snatches a deer from the woods grasp

and chatters for an hour about its litheness.
It fell to us to unlock this path’s puzzle –
spell hieroglyphs upon the land’s patterns –
leave nothing else but time behind us.

Like the moon frosting the evening, brushes the darkness,
a Castle falls out of the forest –
meets us as we crunch around a corner:
It carves its ancient signature into us.

This must have let us forget, as we left there in darkness
and stumbled up the stone-ridden hills, slowly,
eerie at the earth crop’s murmuring whispers –
the little light that fed the surging darkness.

Then, chancing the elder hunting track,
we saw histories of the boar’s foraging,
burned stars into memory as we shivered –
hearing Orion’s shadow, under the frosted roads.

The City Moves in Me

Terror swims inside me like a basking shark –
it is my sullen wake, it fills the air behind
as I’m drawn along suburban stone.
I see the wild forgotten as a dream is forgotten
I know I dreamed, but what was it?

I stand on a hill and see the city
draining down its valley plughole –
soft scars left in the grading air.
I see this city move as a scrapheap moves
slowly downwards, churning the earth.

Waiting for a bus I wait too long
and my figure, mistaken for a statue
by some routine artist in a tatty book
is selected for the top of the heap
which moves, and the wild falls further.

In a shifting forest, in the past beyond thought
a foraging girl picks out an acorn
from a skin of dry leaves, her breath
marks the air. She leaves it
and the earth hurtles out from beneath

Respite

Unnanounced in the cities spring up
unattended eddies in the flow
hiding quiet and held in check
by walkers whose solitary paths
attain the force of stone.

And from time to time, erupt
in a long awaited silence
in some valley, some alley in the back
where aerial trees cling drinking
the living city rain, and biding.

A silence which, like a sigh
after a long day’s work and walk
after the bag’s down, tea’s brewing
and you raise your hand to your eyes and rub
and the air empties itself of talk;

So, calm descends in the sun’s heat
And the car-noise lends you pity –
lets you breathe freely, unassailed
by unnoticed constant tack and tear;
the cold stress of a city

The Forest

The Tree says “Down! – you
seeds and sapling usurpers
“I am the root and I the purpose
“Know my bark, it keeps me strong.”
And murders them with shadows long.

The saplings and the seeds chant –
“Up! – up the republic of growth
“Of branching ideas, and new things here below
“Until the wood is filled with variety
“Old bark can stay – but we’ll have our society.”

The forest is filled with the kinds of desire
But all must drink – and bathe in the sun –
The far spread shadows are death to some
“Until the dark dawn of some great forest fire”

Some hope to spark, to get underway
The falling, the ashes, it tends to gestate
Grand ideas of a sunlit glade
Though dappled light seems the best some can await –

Born as they are with stunted branch
Or lack of structured niche or dance
They tend to fall back on the law of the light –
that when shadow is cast, those in shadow must fight.

Either starving dark amongst the shoots
Or taking as model the climbing vine
Or cutting the old bark down to size
Or grouping and starving the heartless old roots
To scatter light out from the leaves of the few