Father called again.
I listened to the message, as usual.
Listened to the scratching of knives on plates. Listened. Listened.
It is noise.
The words, the words you have owed me
for twenty three years, father: they do not come. What I want is for you to be sorry.
For the epiphany to f
upon you like rock.
How could you, for all these years, feel alive,
when so many nights I waited,
crying, at the door,
my young hands clawing at the glass?
You lied, you stole from me, by omission.
And now, I wander from man to man,
filling your bitter shoes with dissapointments,
tar-black, and weather-worn.
Daddy, why must they all love like you love?
Why must they all stink of you
and wear your clothes and talk
as though they are gods?
I survived you, but evil, too, has a thousand faces.
It is you, isn't it? Underneath all those masks?
It is you,
with your bloodshot eyes.
It is you.
I often ponder
Of my being isolated
In this world of 7 billion
I often wander
Alone I often wander around
In this vast world
I often feel out of love
Of friends and those special ones
In this lovely world
I often feel I could fly
Out of this defensively closed society
In this wide world
I often get a feeling
Of sadness when I can't share happiness
In this jealous world
I often get an emotion
Of joy when I succeed in befriending someone
In this hostile world
In the end of the poem I come to the essence
Of this world as not being so mean as it appears
In this first thought
I re-read what I titled this poem as
And say out loud that
I'm Not Alone
I need another hand
I will take your hand
Leaving you one to wander
while three work to fill the well
stripes of dawn sift through the grey departing night,
and in my home, behind those rays of dust,
the freedom i love will soon be claimed by an incessant morning phone.
my heart numbs, longs for the kindness, constant kindness of the night
the music of my pulse already starts to fade,
a weight sets in, invisible grimace of so many trailing thoughts unraveled now,
to bear until the darkness-swilling reach of soul can span again...
would i fly at brightened glass in fractured urges,
bolstered yet adrift in any day's torrential memes?
rage at seeming machination's constant interruption of my highest rarity of living well?
or smile at the herdlike expectation's threat to condescend,
and at least scour remnants of the search undone... throughout the day
insufferable choice of final future origins
the mail arrives,
my forehead stops to wonder at the door,
and at that pang of hunger
running, overrun, the mind churns night in such sweet shadow shifts!
to fall, legless and dissolve into the rising light..
as if a Noh play were being heckled through to end by gaudy ads
to jolt us bridgeless from that subtle world
and wander long on lethe banks of noisome blare.
at times i stroll this nowhere stranding here, pretend, and gaze from hiding,
between a wincing coffee swill
imagined easeful face of signs,
"easy as a gentle summer wind..."
tolerant to all, to blow a "selfless" stillness into me
to wave, and smile --breathe a blanket on acuter truths
with which i meet the day enwrapped.
but quietly i wait... for Time to die:
an hourglass to shatter in the instant of eternity!
and birthe anew each 3 am, create anew--
those kisses, frozen birds of static bliss become
a moulded wax to shape the plenum love as roaming peace,
darkness-rest to calm a pointless labor,
abate the drift into an unwalled corner's only inward exit--
as whisper hands can cradle nescience
such, that grains become a world,
in which invented seas are sweeter than the toxic real
whose bitterness a cherishing of death unveils awry,
or right as winter dust.
i yearn in flight and add to fullness,
find fullness once again
to hover equipoised at love's encrusted center,
where pain gives way to peace i cannot have.
if i would have this other 'purest' love,
and for instance find the meaning once again in wartime's bated negligence--
as in a perfect silence wind can brush the lips with all of life's aroma--
and as a gentle fire smouldered long,
at Spring, ignites within the splay of tender leaves--
so archetypal solitude of being beings manifolded one, i may fulfillment find...
i may go find myself alone now,
or swagger to an ancient drinking song,
or fall into those evening arms,
to find abated also, idols of the heart in each
for what the greater heart amends...
all for yearning better worlds
the pain has sent me reeling prone--
curling at complacent murmurs,
coos of love to torment all without
wherein i wallow, fallen from all heights,
absurd escape, removed---surrounded still
by so-called metalove, abject phantasmal swoon
i grit my teeth against,
as heaving sand would send the shore to sea and drown nostalgia evermore,
as only total extrication serves to quell an everpresence such as this,
ringing in the twilit dew,
or starlight whirl--
or inverse in a heedless curse--
horizons cease in this expanse
surging at the birth and death of things
My bitter dishes cry
To be cleaned as they sit
In crusted contempt
With reds that bleed their seething
Lack of clarity
With smiles half baked and
Sip more and in deeper gulps
Their lives are swallowed
By the brew
But I'm not as lost
As I once thought my mind
In aching desperation fleeted
Angelic drawls to wrap
The dusty shoulders
Keep their hunched secrets heavy
Till they break
And if three breaths could save the world, they may in fact expand
Those minds and hearts to unite
Where shallow thoughts of ego driven
Madness clings like smog upon
But they travel
These dreams of fresher air and
To the forests of the northwestern
Drizzle drenched streets they wander
We're not so hopeless as if to rot
In the shoes we bought last year
I'd rather beg to smile
Then wrap myself in the scowls of
Empty presidents that died for sorrows they started
You and only you know who I am.
When you touch me with your muddy hands.
I am a piece of flesh, with a blossoming heart.
We lie in the forest beneath the starry dark.
Challenge my mind but do not get lost in arrogance.
Do not engage without caution, but love with patience.
Be mine so long as I can feel the spark in your touch.
Love me hard and deep, but not too much.
I lose myself and escape to your eyes.
I wander amongst the streets of your fears and lies.
But I do not run or flee or scramble away.
For those moments I am lost, yet unable to stray.
Allow your heart to be my home, and I will do the same too.
I will bury my body in your muddy hands, and I will leave them clean for you.
Oh the work of a man
who has something to gain,
But for a dopamine junkie
it's all just a game.
Athletic and apathetic,
Need some drive
'cause lethargy's in vain.
So we'll keep at it
until we hit a vein.
and church-bells sing,
enter the ring.
"Is everybody in?
Is everybody in?
The ceremony is about to begin"
knows the stakes are high,
But I'm not one to gamble
I just like to get high.
Head to the library
and take a hit,
Scourer the drug dens
for a decent book.
Now to quote such a tome;
"Not all those who wander are lost",
Yet most who wander
tend to trespass.
I'd guess that is the nature of adventure.
But comprehend this,
When we consider others' words
we hear a whisper of their thoughts.
When we walk in others' worlds
we stand atop their minds' plot.
And to traipse in another mind
is trespass beyond the metaphysical line.
-Lines Fourteen, Fifteen and Sixteen by Jim Morrison (The Doors)
-Line Twenty-Six from The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien
In the winter garden
of the Villa del Parma
by the artist’s studio
green grass turns vert de terre
and the stone walls
a wet mouse’s back
grounding neutral – but calm,
soothing like calamine
in today’s mizzle,
a permanent dimpsey,
fine drenching drizzle,
almost invisible, yet
with evidence of rain.
In the kitchen’s borrowed light,
dear Grace makes bread
on the mahogany table,
her palma gray dress
bringing the outside in.
Whilst next door, inside
Vanessa’s garden room
the French windows
firmly shut out this
season’s bitter weather.
There, in the stone jar
beside her desk,
branches of heather;
Erica for winter’s retreat,
Calluna for spring’s expectation.
Tea awaits in Duncan’s domain.
Set amongst the books and murals,
Spode’s best bone china
turning a porcelain pink
as the hearth’s fire burns bright..
in this house
a very Bloomsbury tone,
a truly Charleston Gray.
Not quite daffodil
Not yet spring
Was Nancy’s shade
For the drawing room
Walls of Kelmarsh Hall
And its high plastered ceiling
Of blue ground blue.
Playing cat’s paw
Like the monkey she was
Two drab husbands paid
For the gardens she made,
For haphazard luxuriance.
Society decorator, partner
In paper and paint,
She’d walk the grounds
Of her Palladian gem
Conjuring for the catalogue
Such ingenious labels:
Brassica and Cooking Apple
Green to be seen
In gardens and orchards
Grown to be greens.
It would be churlish
to expect, a folly to believe,
that green leaves would
cover the trees just yet.
But blossom will:
clusters of flowers,
And at the fields’ edge
Primroses dayroom yellow,
a convalescent colour
healing the hedgerows
of winter’s afflictions.
Clouds storm Salisbury Plain,
and as a skimming stone
on water, touch, rise, touch
and fall behind horizon’s rim.
Where it goes - no one knows.
Far (far) from the Madding Crowd
Hardy’s concordant cove at Lulworth
blue by the cold sea, clear in the crystal air,
still taut with spring.
A spring day
In Suffield Green,
The sky is cook’s blue,
The clouds pointing white.
In this village near Norwich
Lives Marcel Manouna
Thawbed and babouched
With lemurs and llamas,
Leopards and duck,
And more . . .
This small menagerie
Is Marcel’s only luxury
A curious curiosity
In a Norfolk village
Near to Norwich.
So, on this
Marcel’s blue grey
Perched on a gate
Squawks the refrain
Sumer is icumen in
Lhude sing cuccu!
Groweþ sed and bloweþ med
And springþ þe wde nu,
thrown off the hump
the Japanese way.
Inside hand does the work,
keeps it alive.
Outside hand holds the clay
and critically tweaks.
Touch, press, hold, release
Scooting, patting, spin!
Centering: the act
precedes all others
on the potter’s wheel.
Centering: the day
the sun climbs highest
in our hemisphere.
And then affix the glaze
in colours of summer:
I see you
by the dix blue
asters in the Grey Walk
via the Pear Pond,
a circuit of surprises
past the Witches House,
the Radicchio View,
to the beautifully manicured
Orangery lawns, then the
East and West Rills of
Gertrude’s Great Plat.
And under that pea green hat
you wear, my mistress dear,
though your face may be April
there’s July in your eyes of such grace.
I see you wander at will
down the cinder rose path
‘neath the drawing-room blue sky.
Out on the wet sand
Mark and Sarah
take their morning stroll.
He, barefoot in a blazer,
She, linen-light in a wide-brimmed straw,
Together they survey
their (very) elegant home,
a retreat in Olive County, Florida:
white sandy beaches,
It’s an everfine August day
humid and hot
in the hurricane season.
But later they’ll picnic on
Brinjal Baigan Bharta
in the Chinese Blue sea-view
dining room fashioned
by doyen designer
Leta Austin Foster
who ‘loves to bring the ocean inside.
I adore the colour blue,’ she says,
‘though gray is my favourite.’
A perfect day
at the Castle of Mey
Watching the rising sun
disperse the morning mists,
the Duchess sits
by the window
in the Breakfast Room.
Green leaves have yet to give way
to autumn colours but the air
is seasonably cool, September fresh.
William is fishing the Warriner’s Pool,
curling casts with a Highlander fly.
She waits; dressed in Power Blue
silk, Citron tights,
a shawl of India Yellow
draped over her shoulders.
But there he is, crossing the home beat,
Lucy, her pale hound at his heels,
a dead salmon in his bag.
blue, clear skies,
before the first frosts
and the apples ripe for picking
(place a cupped hand under the fruit
and gently ‘clunch’).
Henry Holland’s hall -
just ‘the perfect place to live’.
From the Picture Gallery
redolent in portraits
and naval scenes,
the view looks beyond
to Brecon’s Beacons.
At the fourteen-acre pool
trees, cane and reed
mirror in the still water
where Common Kingfishers,
blue green with fowler pink feet
vie with Grey Herons,
to ruffle this autumn scene.
In pigeon light
this damp day
into lamp-room grey.
The trees intone
An autumnal valedictory
to reluctant leaves.
Yet a few remain
hanging by a thread
they turn in the stillest air.
Green smoke from damp leaves
float from gardens’ bonfires,
rise in the silver Blackened sky.
Close by the tall railings,
fast to lichened walls
we walk cold winter streets
to the warm world of home, where
shadows thrown by the parlour fire
dance on the wainscot, flicker from the hearth.
Hanging from our welcome door
see how incarnadine the berries are
on this hollyed wreath of polished leaves.
I am lost,
Only to be complete in my brokenness...
An imagination left to its fragments -
Almost methodically widdled down to dust,
My body left mindless,
My soul in shambles -
I am empty.
An uninhabited cup waiting to be filled,
A blank canvas needing paint -
Who am I to wander this world?
Who am I to love someone?
Who am I to exist?