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Posts Tagged ‘birds’

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THE SENDING AWAY OF NEGATIVE ENERGIES

One, two, three.
The thrush in the ash:
Vast mantra of space,
His bell voice and dorje bill.

Phurba crow
Struts alert amongst the dreaming sheep.
He stabs the ground
With a pure vision.

Silence as the clouds build to rain.
Taiko in the hills.
Lorry dungchens drone
On the valley road.

My ears are pierced with golden words.
Golden dust is in my eyes.
Golden smoke arises from horizon altar.
The Will of Heaven, unfathomable
As ever.

Some say there are stories to tell,
Some say stories to disprove.
In every hedge a blackbird rattles alarm,
Though there is nothing to fear.

Who has the shell as blue as sky?
The robin, I think.
Its white eternal arc
Is the world turned inside out.
Lying unnoticed, fallen from the chapel hawthorn.
A ruse to escape death.

Like shinto priests
The magpies strut with care the chapel roof.
They enunciate name and place
And the desires of each supplicant.
Hop and bow, hop and bow,
And call aloud to the spirits
Who will listen.

Whilst the domed mountain
Rests in Wang-Wei
And Wang-Wei rests in the mountain.
The ghosts of words stretched thin,
Their lips unsure whether to cry or smile,
But that is the nature of prayer and praise.
The whines of the psalmist irritating the gods
To distraction.

Give a little thought to the little things,
The wriggling life stepped upon unseen.
The unconcerned hosts, the vast inconsequential
Upon whom you rest.
The threads wear thin,
The seed unhurried.

A syllable breath forms
In the river’s mouth.
Never quite uttered.
Never quite understood.

We have not enough silence,
Not enough pause to continue here long.
From the dimpled, starry horizons
The Protectors gather.
What shall they deem worthy,
And what destroyed?
It is not a trick question.
But there is no answer.

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Early morning frost
Wind beneath the raven’s wings
A nice cup of tea.

The first drops of rain
Three kites skim the valley floor
Their cries long and thin.

In the tall oak
by the chapel door
A gang of jackdaws
telling smutty jokes.
They have no care
for the slow sermons
of crows,
Nor the ponderous theology
of glint-eyed
ravens.

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BELTANE DAWN

1
A thin thread: birdsong squeezed through,
Floods open: light, blue and still.
Time dances, each moment
A coming and a going.
A sound of slow wingbeats,
A calling of mating angels.
Souls tumbling together
In the undergrowth.
The vapours of summer:
Arising smiles.
The song grows stronger:
A limitless uncurling,
A gesture of compassion,
A mudra of offering up.

2
Still pillows:
The grey cloud
Furled, uncurled
A world greened.

Two slow crows,
Shadows mated,
North by north-east
Over the dew wet fields,
Over the singing wood.

Light pushed in
From subtle edges.
A moment of flowers,
Blossomed exhalation.
She stretches in sleep,
A sudden perfume.

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STORM DAYS

This hollow, unrevealed sky.
Dipping, a magpie attempts a new meridian,
A straight flight to food or shelter.

The dead elms’ reaching fingers quiver;
Power chords, the cables roar.

We each and all must huddle and endure,
With the sparrows, with the ever joyous,
Garrulous sparrows – delicate and subtle
In their design, a clutch of heartbeats,
Warm, communal.

No malevolence in the weather.
No malfeasance in the storm.
Another day to sing about.

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DAWN CHORUS AND MOMENTS OF FROST

As if this feather, slow-turning, falls,
One breath of ice, branching blades
Arcing ghosts of fern, arced ghost of forests.
Pinioned cold, eager, aware, edge fractured.
Fingertips feeling for pattern, the familiar
Stretched pale, translucent.

As the scattered, sprinkled pierce of sound,
Woven between moonlit pale dawn wind,
Tumbling, cascades and choirs,
A flurry of beak and breast-soft down.

As all life joined up by song,
No less, no more meaning than this.
Small hearts full and pouring,
The vessel, vehicle, of the world.

No more and no less than this:
The opening of small mouths,
The fast tremble of accepting hearts.
Light now, and slow revolutions through space.

This place, placement, placid, pellucid.
Transcendent fingers frosting fine feathers,
Growing, though not grasping,
Water flowers framed in ice.

Small time, halted, crystalline.
Slow arcs of how things are,
How they happen.
Seen, unseen, diverted, amalgamated.
Dawn chorus and the moments of frost.
Suspended breath, then
Light and song.
No more, nor no less
Than this.

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PRETA

Are we cradled in this new, cold dawn
Or do we fall weightlessly,
Our feathered bones hollowed by the mighty?

It comes in waves and seems to say
You must remain, but I,
A majority of one,
A minority of millions,
See no way to please the chosen machine.

We weigh nothing,
Vaporous, without memory,
Vacated, echoing,
The inconvenient, avoided, disregarded,
Re-written.

What it is we seek has not been found
In this slow, death-quiet brightening.
This birdsong is not for us
Nor has been given us this breeze.
No blessings that are not earned,
No comfort not calculated.

To fall without sound, to fray
And neatly dissappear,
Not to whimper or moan,
Nor to cry out to the invisible.

I shall put on the wings of the crow,
His sharp eye.
I shall guiltless rise on storm
And consume the already dead.
Guiltless and open as the sky.
To accept nothing, to bless everything.

Our peace cannot be stolen:
It only lives within us,
And cannot be traded
Nor snuffed out.
Yet we tread the ruts of long war,
Futile, strive to best these dark passions
With muddy fires and sounds of ripping time.
Run, run, from silence,
Run from stillness.
The hounds of midnight mad for blood:
Their hunger is our failure to face
The white mirror of emptiness,
The fall,
The long fall,
With no end.

O ye birds of silent air,
Ye travellers before dawn.

—-

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MIND FLICKER

Dream-quick,
These words
Borrowed
From
A deeper well.

AIR OCEANS

Broad prowed,
Galleon wood-pigeons
Dip and anchor
On buttercup oceans.

Bright morning breeze.
Lullaby shanties
From crow’s nest trees.
Sun-still islands,
Slow air tides.

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