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Posts Tagged ‘life’

Llangammarch Blaze

There now, lay it all down,
The soft memory and the memory of hard bone.
After the year’s first true frost
A dead sheep lies in the field becoming a dance of hawks and ravens.
And on a lonely hillside unremarked
A blaze has born the babies away.
A smudge of smoke and the light of morning
Is no prayer of peace to ones who wait
Empty-hearted for better news.
The village, warm now in sun, silent.
Thoughts unthought of before – friends vanished,
Those known, now unplaced, a hollowness
Around memory clung to.
It is an uncertain anchor to hold on to –
This world that blinks apart from day to day.
Should we rise and flow like the oak leaves
On the cold dark currents of the Irfon?
Or wrap around like ivy, cling like lichen bloom
To this weathered stone.
We are a thin soil that the wind will blow and the waters leach.
The babies are gone who should be dancing.
The mothers silent, slowly dissappearing.
Pick it back to the bare bones.
Feed the world with our ripped out sorrow.
We are nothing. But we were loved.
Once named, now melted back to everything.
A thin soil on scarred stone.
Golden are the tree tops, a palest blue sky.
The ravens dance in their ring, in and out,
While the sun still shines,
While the sun still shines.

written as the news was emerging about the great and tragic loss in our small village. A family house destroyed by fire in the night, a few children escaping, but many more lost. Llangammarch now besieiged by hordes of prying press and film crews.

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Gathered In

There in its branches
All the dead are gathered.
And there they sing,
Bright as ivy berries
Whilst angels, like winter wasps,
Sip grateful and murmur
a psalm of houses.
There is this, and nothing but this:
A gathered slow change
From one, shared endlessly with the other,
Wrapped and stretched,
Wriggled and feathered.
A rope of souls arcing
The deep between lonely stars.
And the slow pools,
And the fast river of seconds
Washed away-
Breathed in, breathed out,
And in the silences between:
The wind in the dry leaves
And the creak of limbs
Tangled from rusted iron rails,
And shattered blooms of stone
And words in an old tongue:
Here lies, in memory of, the memory,
The memory itself.
One that was, gone now beyond crumbled edges,
Melted skin, up to the snowline,
Down to the river pastures.
Gone to the hairy down-soft snakes of ivy;
The hard, blood-thin flakes of yew;
The bitter tang of elder, caught right there
At the back of the throat;
The delightful bruised scent of ground-ivy
And the small violet day.

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This life now gone:
A storm of rainbows,
A bowl of fragrance,
An utter song of views.

How to hold the fullness of it?
How to honour the living of it?
How to conceive the lap and swell
Of that one full ocean of sensation?

One eternal unfolding memory,
A tumble of heartbeats.
These every jewelled moments
Are seeds flung back into universal soil.

Never lost, always cherished,
A fuel for dear futures.
They are collected: each breath, each moment.
Valued, priceless passion,
Tears in the bright eye of being,
Tears in the flow of all beings.

Mother, mother, a soft delight,
All burdens borne away,
All pains a cauldron,
A chrysalis swirled
Awaiting new dream
On a new day.

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BRIGHT WAVE

he drives the drivel words
as spittle with his tongue,
a brush to paint a world his God loves
but cannot say without him,
without the mad thrust of red on palette,
a knife to scrape around and fill a pretty canvas
of the salt and the sea and cans of history
and glory of the body of the boys
and flouncing, daylight, breezy girls
who are the souls shining of something much greater,
(though the boys taunt and laugh
and point rude and thrusting
in the open aired blowing weather).
And the canter of Time slows,
then whipped on, races on, on beyond,
never taking stock much but breeding more
and eating all the progeny of stars
in one great, great hunger.
Slow, slow then.
Slow and weep and wonder
at the thin veil, so strong and mysterious.
A cat’s paw, a cat’s eye, a cat’s patience.
A graceful kill is all the fun there is here.
A grace certain, and final, and laughing away
the sadness, and the roar of rivers,
always the roar of rivers, going through.

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Still In Flight

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THOU ART

this earth
breathed upon
(the warm breath
of love and lust)
holds for a little while
in wonder
then retreats
to sighing earth.
its breath
passed on.
a whisper
in the forest,
a gust
below the rocks
and the high heather.
where the kites
and ravens wheel.
and the sun and stars,
too, kindled, embers,
by that offered air.

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I have left a soft, small light
So as not to wake the ones I love.
Rising in the long and cold
Of frosts and dark morning..

Gone to kindle a new hearth,
To catch with tinder
The last left light,
To warm the space distant as holy.
A bloom, a bud pushed through,
A green something from soily ground.

I have left a soft small light,
Like all those others who have,
In their tumbling watching heavens,
So as to never lose place,
So as to one day, quietly slip back home,
Or at least, at very least, know for once
From whence we, longing, drifted,
Wandered, a dream untrenched,
Not dimmed by mornings.

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TURNED, GONE ON (requiem)

Stillness now, lost blue and empty silence.
After wracked storm, tearing breath,
Tangled rain. The howling
Has ceased, calm, calm.

Where sun reaches, there
Is hope of a little warmth.
But little warmth in shade,
Little warmth when the face
Turns away from light.

Calm void where you have gone,
Spacious, rested, freed from pain of time.
Naked void where you were,
Are, no longer.
The empty fields,
The stiff sloped horizon,
The days ahead unformed, vast.

These winter roads
Will lead to a surprise of spring,
But not soon, not soon.
Not before the world becomes ragged.
It must become ready, choosing, too,
Letting go what is,
Letting uncertainty bloom.
Too tired to breathe
One last slow, drawn out,
Whispered breath.

The void of skies
Fills slowly with new cloud dreams.
The scoured earth will clothe its scars
In new skins of green life.
The hollows will slowly fill,
The woods, they will be bound in birdsong.
It will become gentle, dancing once more.
But not soon,
Not soon.

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