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Posts Tagged ‘landscape’

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CONJURATION

He sits by the window letting the landscape go.
A little incense will stretch and curl in the moving airs.
There is welcome rain on pale, misted hills:
The meadows and their trees will green.

The shoals will flicker beneath thin surfaces,
And there is skill in waiting and skill in catching up the glimmer.
Sometimes it is enough to hold one wriggling thing.
Sometimes a light touch will tease a line,
A bright twist into this world, a hopeful humming reel.

There is the holding and the letting go.
A whisper wish to Gwyn ap Nydd
Who hunts these lost ghosts and churns them upwards.

To mark a path only, or to push down into it,
Or to be pulled willynilly in mad rush and see,
See where it leads, traipsing forgetful, curious.
Or but to float above serene and light as hawk bones,
To not become distracted by maybes,
To contain all, to exclude nothing, to lose track of no slither,
To allow a subtle sedimentation – to be that patient,
To become equanimity, geological.

It will be the touch of madness that marks it out,
The touch of madness they shall not forget.
The discomfort of impossible resurrection:
Light that is not there, a bubbling up of echoed sounds,
A mystery of conjured voices, a song of ghosts.

This, the slow and certain engraving of our vanishing lives
Upon your smoothed and cooling brows; etched, hatched and nested within
Your twigged and tumbledown minds.
A thimble of the past to dull each ache of uncertain stitch.
That impossible race to reach each sunsetting horizon.

Between the moment and the madness
Is where the bright shoals swim.

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How the cuckoos sing sweetly
Of treachery and loss.

In the dewy morning
The rivers run low,
The hills to themselves,
Quietly weeping.

Ravens are joking on their way
To the slaughter-fields.

They do not need
The permission of gods
To be satisfied and at peace.

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SONG OF THE LORRIES

Through an open window
The song of the lorries
Pushing up the hill,
Their rumbling voices
And whistling lungs.

When they have passed-
The chant of the thrush,
Praising the god of sunlight
And feathers.

And this sky,
The colour of bluebells.

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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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And they are still here
Still beneath the land
Protesting the desolations
As ravens do on heather banks.

And they are still here
Too proud to move or sway
Driven down, weathered and grey
As their own gateposts, slowly
Laminating, word on word,
One purpose losing its one memory.

And they are still here
Though always leaving.
The language of rivers
Muttered on slated lips.
Eyes closed,
Dreaming on hilltops.

They are still here
Initials carved on tumbled stones.
The neat hearth scattered,
Black earth, cold fire,
Comfort lost.

They are still here on
The cool breezed morning,
In dew bright hollows,
On silent roads
Sunlit, full of hope.

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Transient 7

TRANSIENT 7

Were it to remember itself
In a million years
It would dream these
Mists and valleys
Wondering were they real.
And like a song sung in sleep
The birdsong drifting from
Each white hollow
And the rippled hilltops
Coming and going
And the hills and fields
Lying so green and glorious
And the slow rain
The slow rain.

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PAKAD: CLOUDLESS SILENCE

It is a cloudless silence, a stretched skin of light,
White wheel of sun and moon, stars silver singing road,
Painted vast and edgeless, the deep rolling earth
Breathing in hills, dreaming in valleys.

Cloudless silence here
White light pierces winter mind.
The tumbling waters

Cloudless silence here
Lost in mist, crow calls its mate.
Cold air, dogs barking.

Cold breeze shifts the mist
Dogs bark in the distant town.
A cloudless silence

In cloudless silence
All these thoughts fall silent now.
Footsteps on the road.

A delicate touch
Keeping warm this egg of words.
New cloudless silence.

Three crows dancing song
Cold breeze on the snowcapped hill.
A cloudless silence.

Pakad, jor, alap.
A slow unfolding morning.
This cloudless silence.

A pakad is a theme in Classical Indian music. It is a short series of notes that identifies and characterises every raag. It appears and reappears throughout each piece of music. It is a constant moment of return to mood and purpose.
Alap is the slow development and investigation of the note sequences of a raag, a discovery of themes.
Jor is the section that continues the development within a more rhythmical framework.
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