V.57

I want to to want outmoded
forms, being young. I want to buy
a second hand record, music
I have never heard, and return

to the room with the red curtains,
and play it for you, on the couch,
while I close my tired eyes and dance.
To feel the cold plastic crackle

in my form, and open and close
the gatefold sleeve, like a locket
I have this power over, wide
and thin with the breaking card-spine.

To clothe my fantasies in styles
ripped out of old films, out of lies
that came from old archives, about
how this or that album was made

in a cabin in the snow, blood
formed from the mouth and captured here
in lines around a black disc. As
fantasies are the outfits this

moment wears. At the moment, I
want to paint, and read old fadeds
you can break the spine of, or tear
pages from to burn, if you choose to

V.45

The guitar is a universe
that grows in the air. It is here
in the park, in the trees raptness
to the wind. It is in the move

beneath us, of the dirt and stone
bassline. The voice also becomes
a timeless concept, borne with time
when space itself became vocal

and elements harmonised from
the raw newness which was pouring
from the gaps between strings. A voice
of violin becomes a strain

of primitive object in the
clearing between trees. I claim this
origin of tones to be so
essential as to be veinlike.

You cannot take it from us and
leave us with eyes. The grass has bent
under thousands of intentions –
each competing for the title

of the most complex object in
the real. And each most beautiful.
Nutrients flow in paths that forge
bright thoughts and so I am heavy

2, 7×7, Music

Music flattens all nuance
in the word-play – or draws out
meaning in simple rhythm.
Each step of the insect foot
on the dry grass blade is void
and thoughts collapse – ancient stars
you hand me your cold beer and

confused, I count syllables
on my fingers instead of
offering up applause – flat
claps to reward the groove, gone
replaced by a strange avant-garde
thanks. I hand you back your cup.
Galaxies spark on your cheek.

Three Sketches

I –

A calcinated cliff towers over the wood
Riddled with caverns and within those
caverns, we find more caverns, the walls
Are made of caverns and the floors
Well, little difference there with an abyss
If I’m honest. The clouds dragging
themselves over the earth set up
A tone, with a little liquid and a vibration
Which gets the lightwaves shivering
And humming, with all the depth of oceans
And it blasts through into the very skeleton
Of the plateau, into the brain of the earth
Blasts it right up until the moment when
It almost shivers apart. Then waterfalls
Fall, crash down along the paths of thought
Filling it all up slowly with a mercurial
Liquid, the liquid of worth. It brims
brims with all of value, even the chasms
Blackness seems somehow fuller.
And that’s music.

II –

We watch as it happens;
The glint descends, glistening.
It flutters and curls before landing
With a flitter just beyond hearing
Around her eyes, nesting in wrinkles
Burrowing deeper, I soon see it looking
Out at me, and we smile. And I know
From now on, what she wants of me.

III –

Still night, dark night, night
To tempt the stars to a long flight
Or to give it up and fall, crash
To earth or ocean, falcon fast
Fitting snugly into the mineral
Dance and swirl of all nocturnal
Dust, but the air is still and thick
It waits, quietly, rainless in
The fug that stillens everything.

On Hope

If sometimes it seems that I have no hope
and sometimes it seems that I cannot rest
with the state things are, and stinging riposte
the many gifts of life – forgive me.
For something grave must force your hand
to pick up the pen and rage at the light
and its dying.
And often for me, it’s rage or despair
the savage bites of the worm in the bud
which have their source of inner trouble
struggling to find a name.
These constellations of rage ignore
The manifold ways we have much more –
The gleaming of this human planet.