Bath

This and the next few poems were rejected from the Poetry Review. I really don’t like resubmitting poems, it feels like the moment has gone. So I will send these on into the aether, rather than having them sat in a black case with other miscellaneous papers.

I don’t mind that they were rejected. Why be sad that one person is not in the right mood to hear what you were saying, or doesn’t like your clothes, or just isn’t open to you. That doesn’t change what you have to say. Why be sad that your picture doesn’t hang nicely amongst the others. It just means it doesn’t fit there. Paintings are beautiful even leant on the wall in the attic with a layer of dust. My own space is wherever I am. Like here.

Bath

“If your everyday life seems poor, don’t blame it; blame yourself; admit to yourself that you are not enough of a poet to call forth its riches” – Rilke

I
There’s nothing really wrong now, per say.
The day was good – disjunct as often
with the day I thought that it might be.
As I wait for the bath to fill up
the room fills with warmer, wetter air.
Not to begin on the day hoped for.
There is just a lightness missing – mist
takes the windows. Empires have been won
and lost because of this wistfulness.

II
My body floats ever so slightly.
The deep element we were borne from
laps my chin as if to say nothing –
is enough, and indeed it is, better, yes.
The sweat beads run out to meet it here
they orbit my body, salts dancing.
Is that enough? To attempt to think
in the calmest way. The figure: still
sea glitters in the sun’s soft twilight.

III
Now – a new series of figures pass;
the wind blowing of trees in dusk dark.
the grey boiling of a deep sea vent.
small blank fish in Mariana black.
a blinding light as torn blinds open.
an ache in the neck which fades slowly.
a small smile quickly dances outward.
A last hope was that bath – just know it.

V.18

Silence as silent as rainfall
in the mid-atlantic on fire –
open up on puddles of oil
paint from a sinking container –

then see the faint rain start. Silent
as you, floating ten feet deeper
silence as the waves wash over
determined by ancient causes

of death, of life, of everything
else as you look up through the film
of skin on your face to see bright
young fish darting into the fire

between gulping breaths of water.
Silence as silent as cut rope
sinking into the depth of sea
beneath you, perhaps the last thing.

Silence as loud as thunder’s roll
which rolls on and on and never
falls to earth but holds the soft birds
in dark suspense on the ship wires,

drawn from this satellite footage
of the earth at night, on your phone
as you lie hearing nothing roar
louder each second each second