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Posts Tagged ‘dreaming’

DHRUPAD 11 (august night)

The hollow hills resounding.
The resounding hollow hills,
Knee-deep in starlight,
Knee-deep in patient oaks,
And the white cries of the fox
And the stretched white cries of owls
And our sleeping souls rising like smoke
Through open windows on this warm night,
Weightless, free of thought now,
Flicking through centuries
As the ashes’ fingers fall and drift
And the berries ripen, sun-polished.
And the dead (who are always with us)
Watch and ripen, remembering old hymns
In an old language, and the music of quiet gossip
And the food of woodsmoke and pipe tobacco
And the too short, long evenings
And the too short, oblivious nights.
Carded and spun these days of commotion,
Made a single yarn end to end,
A story with familiar patterns,
With certain purpose, worthwhile
And righteous, worthy of some eternal reward,
Surely, surely.

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Catalogue

rivermouth of the man-servant
house of the councillor
ridge road by the forest’s edge
the abbot’s land.
the dark stream and the winding river
dipped between the domed land
sprinkled with enclosures of saints,
tonsured walls on green tumped hilltops.
the washpool, wolf’s leap, devil’s staircase.

thr whistling ghosts of drovers and the
warm breath panting of their dogs.
stories of cobbled streets and a wild language
far away.

with gold of many kinds,
they return to the long silence here
and the starlit grazing
of sheep at peace.

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ARTEFACT

We come and go one by one,
or in twos and threes,
waking, sleeping from dream to dream,
handfuls of dust cast heavenwards, taking shape,
then falling back to settled earth. Bubbles, thoughts, whispers.

Birdsong in a pearl-still dawn.
All day in this small green field,
in its tangled bare hedges,
in its edge of trees,
in its deep grasses, the birds
flit and feed, pause and fly off.
All day the sunlight picks out the distant slopes,
the forests, the valleys.
And they, too, come and go with mists
and clouds
and drifts of rain.

For months now I have been working the canvases,
(for people do so like a view to hold on to,
one so dear to them, one they do not have,
a way through the mute walls,
to remember an opening out, a beyond,
a distant something).
Against its nature to drip, against its habit to mix and merge,
against my own fingers’ wish to sweep and gesture.
A discipline,
the tying down of an illusion,
confection for tongue and eye.
A sweet minded moment, an ache of forgetting.
The life of itself, a liquid thing,
to be constrained so, to process
as a stately, well-dressed thing.
Not just a swirled, delightful, mute moment.
A meaning. A purpose identified. The monitoring of the familiar.
As if. As if.

As if there were a story.
As if there were a careful, structured tale.
A small beginning, a once, a long-ago.
Through wild, thorned paths and fog and frost
to a final end so careful balanced.
A just so.
An as it is.

Something to leave behind.
Something to say.
More than a rise and fall.
More than a raven’s cry across the valley.
More than a blackbird in the cool dawn air.
More than a drift of mist above a hidden river.
More than a rise of trout as the gnats dance on light.

The fire is lit
and it must be fed ’til nightfall.
Then, untended, it will die down,
become silent.

That smooth black,
silk-dark soot:
a hand-print,
a fingerprint on a cave wall:
we are here,
dreaming.
And we found a way through.

—-

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THE WATCHES OF THE NIGHT

satin smooth,
the slip of minutes.
a thrum of rain, softly.

tumbled from skies,
dreams like the Towey,
slow, meander seawards.

a wide forest sleep
sighs, a symphony.
owl and fox, conductors.

wandering through.
a trail, footstep words:
small, moonlit puddles.

a dark plateau.
a dusted sequence,
trespasses unforgiven.

even bodiless,
adhering to habit,
cambered causeway.

a bridge suspended.
dark the waters
shimmering cold beneath.

sung by a shape of words.
mountains named,
a throned reciting.

an intimate decay.
a clock of heartbeats,
a lilting, familiar nod.

sideways and down.
subtle the shift,
the weight of dawn.

draped about,
falls discarded.
gathered in, forgotten.

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SNAKE SPIRAL TORC

We slide spiraling
Ferociously nonchalant
Eyes on fire, laughing.

The tumble of sun on sun
The silk whisper, pale moonlight
Equations piled up,
The footprints marking time,
Precise dancers through space.

A knot upon hillsides,
A marching shadow in the valley.
Enchained to the motion,
Slave of raw power, sudden beauty.

This is our sign.
That we dance the dance
Between dusk and dawn
According to the paths before us.

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A continuation of my sporadic project to re-introduce Iron Age Celtic imagery and world-view into the world art vocabulary and other grandiose schemes…..

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MAGATAMA SAYS

Magatama says this is what you are, a wriggle in time, a wriggle in space. An eye that is hollow, a mind that is hollow, a space where, a vessel where, sentience pools and flows through. Embryo spinning round sun yolk. A distinction, a seam, a pebble, an accumulation of used data, a debris, a morraine, a momentum of moments lost, not quite forgotten.
A tube, sealed at either end with only hope. It will not suffer to remain. It too will distort amd become formed, reformed. The spin of horizons never long denied. A new in and a new out. A new edge, a new world, given names from somewhere else. The hollow eye, for the hollow eye does not see except what it has seen before. Somewhere there was a beginning, but it was not here, not here. Each key becomes a door, each door a wall, each wall a cell, each cell a wondering of me and mine, a selfish small delight, a harbouring of dream. Now the tide slips, the shattered, polished brilliance fades. We are left high, drying, the long keening of gulls, sandflies and bladderwrack. No more words. Day becomes day.
Scatter, scatter,
Ye stars!
Scatter,
Ye manifold living beings!
However so far
This home
Shall never become lost,
(though misremembered,
Though mistook),
So wrapped, so folded,
So entangled it is
Within your sheer fibre,
Your fluid, your feeling.
Flee as far as
Beyond the named,
Further than edge,
Farther than form.
Digging foundations for what walls exist, reconstructing our noble and grave histories, mirrors and clouds, equations, flocks of reasons seeking a roost, a reputation. The sun has hidden herself in a cave. Where is the sly shaman will entice her out with curiosity? Shiny things, laughter of others. Wrapped up in, wrapped around and upon ourselves. In becoming out, out in, the curve of edge, empty but for its own density.

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The scratching, sketching reveals magatama is also an ear, an orifice that listens, that absorbs…..and so too, turns doodling into that ubiquitous Celtic mysterious icon, the ‘trumpet spiral’, or for the more botanically minded, the mushroom divided, or for those who watch the way waters weave, the rippled surface vortex……but the doodle as doodle, as gesture, as delight of wrist, it is an outward sweep, a slow arc, an inward sweep, conch consciousness, two shapes from one line, an ineffability, a mystery, a going out and a return, the shape of a soul. Spirit language. It is always tricky, always says more than it says. Clouds conversing with hills………

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VOICES FROM WHITE NOISE ( a dream stream)

I have tuned my ears towards the voice and must try to narrate, to corner sense, 
scribbling 
urgent message 
mind map 
message 
wittering.
I have heard the ravings of the cellared recidivist, the relentless, insistent heretic.
I have chosen,on a whim, to sit next to the glassy stared lunatic on the bus, the Ancient Mariner, and must bend and blow in that breeze.

There is a thread, 
a whisper, a word 
that travels through our dreams. 
Something that remains, that delicately holds on. 
How long does an idea flicker and burn in darkness before it expires? 
(The sigh of acquiesced defeat.)

Deceit is freely given, not asked for, cajoling. Truth must be asked for, urgently, earnestly sought. Why? Truth cannot be weighed out, patted neat and square like butter, wrapped and satisfactory. Truth does not fare well as a commodity. It is a map from only where you are, only from that place, whispered to you alone. Not one great instruction for all. Only madmen rave about universal truths. Each truth is an apple. Each the most round, succulent sweetness produces a thousand seeds all different: some soft, some bitter, some long-lasting, some fragrant. And no one can tell which might be which but by time and patience and the eventual taste of it.

So some of us wake to our dreams, 
scribble in the dark urged to construct, 
to record, 
to remember whispers. 
A reconstruction of echoes.

If I should continue long enough, listen, mould, worry it, then shall it eventually run true, discordant chaos becoming rejoicing refrain, voices emerging from the white noise. The mandala will become populated, the statues shall speak, the mirror offer wise advice, sound reflection….

It fails, it falters with daylight.
What was clear, insistent, cogent,
Pales and hollows.
Dismiss the howls, the complaints,
The sequences that seemed fair.
Tuned out, they rant in another quadrant
Of time and space, stiffled by yawns,
Inconsistent with birdsong.
The Furies, the Oracles,
Sinking slowly
To darker depths,
Slipping,
Spiral-wise,
Melodramatic
Monologues,
Mouths filling
With sifting sands….

——-

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