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Posts Tagged ‘creation’

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LLANWRTYD EISTEDDFOD 2018 – waste gwastraff
This was my submission for this year’s local eisteddfod, that happened just yesterday night. Good to take part in a celebration of art that has its origins so long ago in the 11th century, even though I am not (yet) able to submit pieces in the Welsh language. There are so many pressures these days distracting people from coming together as communities to appreciate each others’ talents. The Eistedddfodau are truly the jewel of Welsh cultural community. Categories range from set pieces in music, recitation, poetry and song to personal choices and works on given themes, as this was. Llanwrtyd Eisteddfod lasts all day, with children performing in the morning, youngsters in the afternoon and adults in the evening. We left about half eleven at night and it was still going! Each local eisteddfod is an opportunity for those who are aiming to enter the prestigious National Welsh Eisteddfod, to get sufficient adjudication and placements to go forward into the finals – so even in the smallest eisteddfods one can see really top quality performances, as well as locals having a go. Getting well respected adjudicators is a key element in attracting the best performers to a local eistedddfod. At all the eisteddfoddau I have seen, the adjudicators are incredibly knowledgeable and helpful in their comments – a true encouragement to creativity.

I have pared away the warm, waiting wood.
The ring of it: the blade pulled,
The curling lucent layers dropped, shuddered to floor.
The shape changing, the deep cut,
The curving line, the scent within the grain
And the borrowed light upon its smoothness.

To make a bowl slowly by hand
Is to contemplate emptiness
And the arc and sorrow and gravity of it all
As the thin curls scatter.

Not much of anything is needed, after all,
If all and all moves toward a single, singular point.
The rest, remains, resting pointless,
Discarded, unfulfilled, as debris.
Becoming something else, but not a worthy thing.
A means to an end, chaff and dross, lees and leftovers,
Swept and piled to make a kindling for a winter’s fire.

On the seventh day
Was there a pile of junk,
The unmade becoming unmanageable,
The chosen and the unchosen,
The first inkling of heaven and hell?

Where went the scraps?
The unwanted edges, the unfinished lines,
The swirling, sanded away interstellar dust?
Perfection is nothing but a stubborn tyranny,
A piling up of discarded beauty, disregarded,
For a dream, the hope of something that is not yet, not yet.

And this life now, whittled away,
Hollowed out a little more by each breath:
Less remains now, for certain, than what has gone by.
If there is an end, not just a turn in the road,
What shall remain of this slow work, day to day?
What of the careful polished surface, the tidy edge,
The slow shaping, the muscles’ rhythmic ache?

Careful or careless, we blind ourselves with dutiful goals,
Discard what seems unnecessary, untimely, unhelpful.
To make something to hold us safe in eternity
We scrape away the real, carve away the grain,
Slicing through the beating heart of things
To find the food that will feed our deepest hunger.

As a vessel for your grace, or as a begging bowl,
We are slowly emptied out, as a waning moon
Over a restless ocean.
Three drops were all that was required,
All else became poison.

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SING OUT

Singing hymns to emptiness
Sound disappears with meaning
The instant it leaves the mouth

We need gods to sing to,
Something of the familiar,
But made more important,

As if worms and weeds
Had not silently shaped
All we are and will be.

It is what rivers and stars do,
It is what sheep and birds do,
Sing out to each other
That thin, frail line between
Life and death and life again.

Greedy gods and good gods
One by one supplanted
Though their lives are aeons.

Fed by song, happy in their given shapes
Until the singing stops
Where they forget their names,
Hatch as butterflies hungry for nectar.

There are the great and there are the small
While the song is sound and silence.
The void: a pause between movements
Where the audience wonders if it should clap
But remains in stillness, held within
A lovely diminishing resonance.

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But ‘we’ is not circled.
We have no edge ( though we think otherwise)
(though we think we think).
We think beginnings and endings,
we think words, breath, silence, breath,
intake the other, exhale the other.
cannot remember any moment beyond
a circumscribed horizon, cannot, even, the dreams,
nor the memories, for sure (was it, was, was it so, was it not?)

There are, of course, clues.
Vagrants, with a certain mildewed smell,
mutter slewed directions, their demon-bright eyes.
(but those we shun, as shadows,
as churchyards at night, as the insisting amoral voices in the mist,
peripheral, shuffled, ambiguous).

The long halls, the rooms, the chambers.
My dear Giordano, such equations, such equators.
So few and tired are the moronic habitual paths,
so broad the primrose paths
to Hell untrod, unstudied.
A rumour of damnation, like a roll of distant thunder,
a storm coming. Well, certainly, there is a storm coming.
From the edges to the centre, from the centre to the edges..
An ending ( of sorts).
And then it echoes around another’s skull.
Seed syllables.
The end of worlds.
The beginning of worlds.

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NIGHT RAIN (Book of Voices)

White noise, a rain of words
(All drops reflecting whole worlds),
But free from explanation, no discourse, no argument.

Indistinguishable millions falling through darkness
Only heard as they disintegrate, pool
And continue a life moving downwards.
A silent freefall ’til disillusioned by the solid,
Exulting, shattered, they shout.

Thought precedes language,
Orchestral is the soul.
A dance of demons and angels
Cross-dressing and interbreeding.

An heretical creation,
An unexpected evolution of many sorts,
Comes down as night rain.
Sound in darkness dancing.

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Hesitancy on the road.
Many paths, choose one and run, or
choose none, still taking one,
’til it bursts to flow,
making itself, self-born,
isolated in shattering glory.
Language rivers, language
rattles, a trance of noise.
Teased by meaning (there or not).
A sequence,
simply a sequence of breaths,
dressed in rhythms of night and day.
Stripped back to the bone,
it is all only, ever was,
ever will be,
song (toes dangling
over the cool void, home of dear silence).
Emergence, enfoldment.
A certain expansion,
a sure rotation,
a welcoming collapse.

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The way music moves us,
(And from where those fiery winds?)
Meaning hidden, meaning most.
A call of lover, mother, home,
A lost path, a landscape,
Dreamed, so familiar, nameless.

The way it moves.
(And what is it?)
A picture of worlds made in mind,
Mind made real, mind talking.
A giving out, a giving of form.
Sounding depths, shallows rippled.

A language of moments
Escaped from time.
Shaped nothing,
Coming, going, resounding,

And music is how we make,
How we shape, our souls.
For all that lives, sings,
(Does it not?).

We find what we may be
By holding, turning, curving air.
Moving, it moves us,
Moving, it moulds us.

Sound exists only
When it is going out
Of existence.
Music moves us
By the accumulated memory
Of notes no longer heard.

(Chords are the thunder
Of one instant.
A tune: a patter of drops,
A blackbird, after storm has passed.)

Wrapped up in it
We find our skin and nerves.
Tingled, a breeze, a whisper.
Edges, but edges that cannot be measured.
Scales, large, small, up, down,
In meets out and melts.

Note, notation, sound
And space timed.

Thought free from subject
And object.
Thought, wordless,
Exultant.

Ripples in the ether,
String theory,
Sound in a jar.
Movements,
First to last.
Scriabin on a mountain
Scribbling Siva.
Drawing colours
From the tenuous darkness.
Chladni smiles.
Shri shri shri.
(Sings itself).

—-

This is in response to a comment, whose whereabouts i just can’t find at the moment, but the first line here is what it was. Apologies and thanks for the inspiration, whomsoever it was….

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EXTRACTS FROM A MIND TERMA

1

Scratched on the eyeball of heaven:
Cloud scripts, lines of vowels winged.
Healed in rain to fall as blue,
Sweet, bitter, sour, salt.
The salt tears, the sweet winds
Rolled and formed, a new language,
A new tongue……

A syllable, mists between the hills.
A spiral seed caught, blessed
And released.
Eye pillow, this white page.
A dream of golden script, a song
On the nature of infinite silence…….

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A drum of skin,
Voice of thunder,
Time and space syncopate.
Truth, a fugue…..

A dancing pattern
Of starlings’ feet
In the snow.
Dakini laughter.
So wonderfully free
Now we no longer exist…..

This language as fabric, satin,
Silk, a filigree, an equation, a map.
Tomorrow’s moments transfixed, melted
Moulded and spoken.
A lace of nerve endings,
Bobbin molecules, probability
Folds of protein.
An unlikely smile,
A figure in the distance
Becoming unreadable.<

<

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Carved in fumes:
A rainbow science,
A bitter construction.
This breath
Echoes its form.
A terma of space
On the tip of my tongue,
Tasting of juniper…..

The footprints of a wandering mind,
Showing where it has been.
Memory, an exhalation,
A ceaseless blink.
This sullen, steadfast belief
In surfaces.
Extinguished the mystery,
Now it is weighed…….

Seed death with the dawn.
Of many forms, inculcated, remorseless,
Inescapable consonants……

A fascination
With the tuned
Eloquence of moments……

Heart stutters,
Breaks open:
Light revealed,
And a pattern of stars……

Flaming shimmer.
The shape of flowers,
Incense, offerings…..

Sun and moon:
Witnesses…..

Cascade.

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——

2

There are moments moving through time.
There are moments floating in space.
There is a rushing in of seasons.

There is the pressure of words
Forming deep and golden,
Blind, squirming, seeking a voice,
The warmth of meaning.

Clouds of words,
An utterance, a glory of sound,
A liberation, a going forth,
A compression, a forming……

It settles as snow,
Silent.
Silver drifting
Thought,
Dissolving down.

As flakes
Caught on fingertip,
A change of state,
An elemental thing,
Effortless……

The repository of time
Is called
Space……

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