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Posts Tagged ‘Mid Wales’

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NOTES FOR A PAINTING

Sunlit meadow
Hidden river singing
Road winding into the mountains.

This road with the colour of itself roams and dips from pink to purple to the brown of a hunting dog. Laid as a wish upon bucking stone, a river of hope for dry feet.

River song
Singing heart
Road into the mountains.

Hidden river
Singing heart
Road into the mountains

Each footstep song, a rhythm of itself repeating with breath and sight, the same view, the slightly changing view, the folding and unfolding view.

Sunlit meadow
Somewhere the river
Singing to itself

This meadow slope lighted with its own green, radiant aura, hovers between dark wood and bright water. A vacant illumined shimmer.

Empty mountain road
Winding beside a river
The sound of sheep

Sheep on the hillsides
Sunshine on the meadow
Empty road.

The mountain faces are copper and lead. They yearn, as mountains do, to fade to mysteries invisible, and clamber towards unreachable towering midnights.

The road and I
Following the sound of the river
Into the northern hills.

This narrow road
Wanders into the hills.
The sound of the river.

The river, a sound of laughing sunlight, uncatchable as eels. We know it by what it is not. The colour of sky and leaves and earth and rock.

Aimless we both wander,
The narrow road and I,
Into the northern hills.

Narrow road –
I do not mind where it leads
Following the river’s song.

These bare branched trees, hazel and alder and oak down there with the birches. Lines drawn across time. A language of balance and holding still. They float more certain than the solid ground.

It will be autumn soon.
The narrow road lost in leaves,
Winding beside the river.

Narrow road and I,
Forgetting where we are
Following the river into the hills.

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VERSE EIGHT

A flash of summer and the swallows are all gone,
Restless above the purple flowers of heather.
Everything that is hard work and driven deep into sorrow mountain
Looks heroic and sunlit from this serene, absent distance.
Held equally suspended before the slope,
fragmenting between memory and forgetting.

Last night’s rain has burst the river’s banks almost.
The leaves spin that have fallen, though the silent wood
remains there, green and dark,
Folded into the valley’s thigh.
Small things shelter, all there is a scurry
and birdsong and bright eye.
A dream language self-generated,
a precision of small hungers.

A moment flows and eddies
Reaching out for words to be clothed.
But now it is a roundness cold and naked,
Hollowed in leaden light, tumbled in cloud.
Hills drift bodiless, dew-ringed.
All the hearts that have ceased
And those that have begun again
Will fail to encompass the mystery.
A perfect river, inexhaustible.

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INK WASH

open window.
now and then:
sighing cars
roll by.

gutters muttering
in light summer
rain.

time caught
on cobwebs,
lost in cloud.

sedge grasses flower,
green trees
statue-still.

Li Po hums
and sketches
silence.

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A cuckoo’s voice
rides the undulations
of the day.

Hardly a breath of wind,
but it will come on to rain later.

Sunday morning sun pushing towards brightness,
fades through lazy layered atmospheres.

The roads are quiet.
In an hour or two
the tourists will arrive
to see what life is all about.

They will whisper by,
Pass through in clean cars
and return tonight
to their city sleep,
Dreams of emptiness
and birdsong.

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MARGINALIA

below this turbulence:
slow, vast, are the currents.
Knotted threads soften, unwind
(As morning mists
In curling, upward sun).

The ghosts we hold most dear,
Those haunted voices we always hear,
That diffuse the endless night-
They come and go
As if they owned the place,
As if they mattered more.

They are so tiring,
These endless stumblings
Proudly towards truth,
Where simple goodness would suffice.

The broken-nailed, mad eyed dreamers,
The demon-fed preachers.

For we tumble towards a close,
And that is always and only certain.

Here, is the benign patience of Spring
Come again to remind us
That warmth will split the hawthorn blossom
(And the hills already drunk and hazy on it).

Just one sunny day,
and all we dream of
is summer.

A slow dance of swallows,
lambs and birdsong,
One blue warm billowy morning in May,
enough to banish all the long months
Of winter, to open and relax,
To build a nest
As if it were forever.

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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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TRANSIENT 5

A day of slow skies
Testing new brightnesses.

Cwm Dwfnant is lost
In dreams of cloud once more.

In the green centre
The river whispers

And the crows feel that
Spring is near now, over the hills,

And sunlight, too,
In the slate and stately rise and exhale.

A sleeping world,
Dreaming of waking,

Dreaming of a small unfolding.

TRANSIENT 6

Tinder, the horizon.
Laid just so
With blue on blue
To catch spark and roar
Come sunrise.

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