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LES DOLLS

she complains to her dolls
about naughty daddy
"SAYS TO ME...NO MORE SWEETS!"

the dolls
gasp at such cruelty
"Tut! Tut" they pout "Tut! Tut!"

"*******!"
screams her rag doll
God she's got a mouth on her!

she mocks my voice
"SAYS...NO MORE SWEETS!"
"What..!" I say. "Nothing!" she says

moans to her dolls
they are all on her side
look at me with disdain

the dolls lie around
trying to trip me up
laugh silently when they do

I now the crumpled
heap at the bottom of the stairs
sure I saw the rag doll wink
TIME(AS THEY SAY)PASSES

The world is busy
becoming

the 17th Century.

Time holds its breath.
Mountains gaze into the distance.

It is snowing
in China.

Ricci's European maps
delight the Chinese scholar

who notes" ...you don't
have to leave your house

...yet you can have complete
knowledge of the world."

Here and now the world
shrinks to an Internet click.

A palace built
of memory.

I yawn and fall
asleep in the 20th Century

...waking up in
the 21st.
MUMONKAN(GATELESS PASS)
( for Junie )

Here, now
sister mine

lost
in time

dead to this world

I offer you

my eyes
my ears

so that you can see...can hear
without fear of Death

always interrupting you.

Take this breath & live again.
I can see enough for two.

*

MYOJU(THE END OF LIFE)

After the bus crash her soul walked home
limping awkwardly now

leaving a trail of footprints
leaking time like blood.

*

KAEI(THE SHADOWS OF FLOWERS)

Often, I visit this moment
long gone

(that has never ceased to exist) .

I go to find my sister
calling her name

lost as she is in the middle
of this vast field

her blue dress a flower

at the very center of it.

Here, Death
does not know her

name
only I call her.

She carries me home
in a piggyback.

I fascinated with the freckle
under the shadow of a curl

where shoulder
meets neck.

I lost in her laughter.

Both of us escaping
Her Death.

*

AME NO UTA(SONGS OF RAIN)

Here, Death
itemises her.

The bruised breast.
The torn spleen.
The broken ribs.
The hemorrhaging.

Death, leaving
his mark

on this
human being.

Familiar with her.
Owning her.

Memory tiptoes
into Death's great palace

& steals back
a freckle

lost behind
a curl

between
shoulder
& neck.

Death
has no need

for it.
AS IS

mountain tired
of its human name
throws off the words

like so much
tattered clothes
walks naked

into a sunset
becoming its own
"I am"

rain too
pays no attention to
the human sounds

reinvents  itself
every time it falls
"I the ever becoming!"

the sky laughs
as words stuck upon it
fall off

"I the great un-nameable!"
pinned down
by a puny words

the moon disdains
all attempts to trap
her in human language

she
"the great she
who is"

who do these
humans
think they are

humans gasp
as the map
unfolds

the mountain has left
of its own accord
the rain falls no more

and the sky
doesn't even
want to know

the map now
a blank
piece pf paper
STORYTELLER SPINS HIS TALE

the trees take
to the sky

great flocks of them
heading south

flying in a V formation
across a moon

the birds standing still
a forest of wings

a plantation of
song

when the mind is
twisted so

it's hard to tell
the woulds from the could bes

I  fall asleep
curled up in my uncle's lap

the magic of his words
winking like one cobweb to another

caught in
an early morning dew.
WHEN FURNITURE FALLS OUT

the bed was asleep
chairs just sat around
the door refused to budge

window
could not decide whether
it wanted to be open or...

earlier in the evening
the fire
had gone out

throwing casually
over its shoulder
"I may be...some time!"

the picture kept
going on about
being framed

"Not again!" sofa muttered
its usual
grumpy self

the elephant
in the room
nobody mentioned it

the elephant
was thinking "Now how
did I get into this?"
REPORT

The liver
it should be said

was conspicuously
the worse for wear

whereas the brain
had remained curiously

young at heart
whereas

the same could not be
said for the heart

mostly eaten up
by the past.

There was no time
left in the body.

The soul could not
be found

which does not
necessarily mean

the dead poet
was soulless.

There remained one tear
not yet fallen

that had crystallised  
around a single memory.

The memory now
much decayed.

The body was
without truth.

There were dreams
to be found.

Wishes had congealed
around hope

and had calcified
on not being used.

There were still some
scattered thought

but it could not
be read.

The body showed
no signs of poems.

But the scar tissue
of writing

was more than
evident.

There were slight tears
perhaps caused by love

but this can only be
guesswork

as they were riddled
by perhapses and maybes,

These poet types
are highly susceptible to such.

Signed:

LLanod Yespmed
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