Dark Dogs in the Morning

The darkness fell onto me like a fever
stirring – stripping and dressing in cold
I picked up my phone, and wiped breath from it
Weak coffee. I left the house, slid doors,
the dogs pressed against me – flickering
buzzing, sparking – something was up
but I didn’t know what.
            I set off

seeing the shoals of mist swim
in morning dark where day is forgotten
and the choral synthesiser drone of stars
shook me, made me shiver – I drowned it out
with my headphones. Walked out
with my pathetic torch across
the wood and farm-land in the mould black
morning – marvelling at the absolute lack
of magic, there in the dust-clump wood.
I glanced around me, saw nothing
thought ‘but wolves, but wild boars’
I smiled, took a fast pace down
the bend to the flood-plain
where I imagine the flesh-fade
of dawn began to apply itself to night

***

Later on return – left tracks
in the forest frost grass from the mansion
to the servant’s quarter
my breath was even more eager than I
to get to the house, it ran ahead
but stopped suddenly – a dead deer
half, half-eaten, eyes open
as the ground is open to the falling
sat there, on the cold patio.
Poachers only want the hind-half
I later learned – I felt the cold fur
brush past, long hair of the black dog –
thought; you were excited for your find
I left you behind. I’m sorry.
She took the skull between her teeth
and cracked it. From the cavity,
the night came flowing back…

Two Poems

Sillhouette

The sun makes silent
all the small planets
of inner orbits
and we only hear –
when they pass in front;

The stars have planets
which tug the belly
of their nuclear
mass explosion – soft
but more than enough;

In the lower tones,
of the dawn rise – there
the small star, has grace
for one still moment –
in the day soon lost;

The world compels us.
We are charred by void
when its emptiness
eclipses ours – but
soft glow the small stars.

Memory of Florida (Helplessness Blues)

What I used to be, and now
what I am, as we drive down
motorways through forest mass
listening closely with my voice
align like an eclipse moon
and the past blooms in present
rapture – I love this album

Old as I get, I will not
forget the forest drifting
drowsily past the window
this rain sifting tambourine –
And damp strung up on song lines
for this perfect alignment
in time and of void cultus.

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.