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Posts Tagged ‘myth’

SOMETHING TO BE SAID (MAYDAY)

Pauses grow longer, a melancholy may soon creep in.
We cannot escape our own voices.
( “We rarely go out these days and visitors, though longed for,
are a great discomfort”).
It is a wild guilt that wants our words in other’s heads.
Always a nuisance and a pleasure
to be infected with poetry,
to admit the familiar voices, to see which one leads, this time, the hunt.
Gwyn ap Nydd collecting souls, the ghosts of words,
The white words, the vapoured words,
the haunted words – as poetry is.
‘White, Son of Mist’ – like the morning,
the first attempt at May, after a night of rain,
new in stillness and birdsong, mist on green land,
the ash trees still thinking about their coming fountains of flowers,
roots wriggled so deep in the past, and aching old.
The dunnock’s sweet descent.
It filters down as if spider webs
And gold dust – the flecks
Of memory and forgetting.
A city with loud inhabitants, unkind and strange.
A darkness punctuated with doors and reasons.
As if it didn’t matter, everything collapses.
The moment passes, the tongue gives up.
It cannot make the chords that the brain sings in,
Just one note at a time, syllable by.
There is something to be said for silence.
The way the mist in its own dreaming gravity
Slides along the slopes
And settles in the cwms.
The way it shifts space.
The way it delineates what is not itself.
With what would we fill these silences
Should all the voices stop?

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MABINOGION HAIKU

This golden river.
Words bob down the long ages-
Mysterious truths

Moon well, sun cauldron.
Who would not become transfixed?
Their utter beauty.

There is not one thing
That is not another thing.
Pay attention, Pwyll!

Green mound lost in fog.
What dream does the world dream here?
breath weaves life and death.

How could she be true?
Oak and broom and meadowsweet,
Made of season’s change.

Do not take possession
Of what is not yours.
(And nothing is yours).



Sort of a hybrid between haiku form and gnomic verse. Apologies for all those who do not know the allusions, but those who know the Four Branches might take some little pleasure in these fragmentary nods…

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BRANWEN SINKS DOWN

Peeling away from this world
No longer glued by its bold certainties.

On a bare, high rock, above the sea,
The voices of wheeling gulls
Make more sense and better songs.
All the gods shrunk again
To caracature and silhouette.

Bawds and predators in golden ships
Sail across the shining sea
Offering friendship and support.
Business opportunities, so they say.
But there is nothing in their pipelines
But death and drought and bones.

A multitude, dreaming dreary dreams
Not their own,
A calcifying inculcation calculated
And considered,
A drip-feed of paralysis and boredom.
Our men of skill are liars
And gloaters over trashy baubles
Transfixed by the mutilation of time.

And so she will sink again
Into the green mounded ground
(White wings folded over her head),
Not wishing more desolation to be hers,
Not wishing to remember anything
But the oldest songs still drumming deep,
A heartbeat under everything,
Hidden roads, perhaps forever safe.

And so she will dream on wide wings,
Back and forth over wide seas, breathing,
Breathing, whispering messages,
Carrying messages, a quivering web.
Pushing down deeper,
The dreams will always, always,
become more real.

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SCRY

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1
Small things
From deep pools
We rise.
Vaporous things lifting,
Turning,
Weightless drifting.
A lick and dissolve,
Ice smoke, sighing, aimless
Rise, spin, twist and dissolve,
A white fade lift,
A tongue, forgetful, vague.
Without a mirror, you see,
We scatter.

2
The falling down of words
Like honey bees or like rain.
They shall patter and gather together.
They shall wash away all dust of death.
They shall be as mirrors
And as suns.

3
Johannes, named from a river
Forever flowing east,
Named from the delta of Aphrodite
And the Aegyptians,
Of perfect memory and skill mathematic.
A subtle blade, enough to wriggle between worlds,
Searching the point between brightness and darkness.

4
All the cities are dying.
Accursed, they spread limp
And rot from centre outwards.
We have purchased all, yet still hunger, empty.

5
The view mists, fogs over.
A spray of rain and rose petal.
Summon the spirits again, Edward.
Summon again the blast of visions.
I have learned the language of angels
And now they pester me
As flies in summer meadows.
The kings and queens of England
Process in elegant spite, shifty-eyed,
Blaming cousins and the fickleness of peasants.

6
Around the garden walls,
Drab sparrows squabbling,
Happy as morning.
In the hills again,
Lost in mists,
Tight-lipped hunters.

7
Those accustomed to gaze and gaze
Letting in the world unmasked, unaltered,
Though they disappear, remain behind each edge
Every line of silver,
Seared into time’s retina.
Like Padmasambhava’s cave,
Taking up his body’s shape,
A perfect void forever sitting,
Open mind, open heart, unclassified,
Uncategorised, a species beyond light,
A ripple cascading throne,
A point through stillness, through reflection,
Through mirrored glare.
The eyes that look back
At all eyes,
Time collapsed to a breath,
Space folded
To a golden nest,
A beer relished at evening.

8
The sacred,
Always a little smutty,
To these men of science.
A vermilion stone smeared with faith.

9
So slight is the edge that shines,
The mirror’s reflectant skin.
So small a thing to throw back vision,
To show what is and is not there.
Such a line between, ( if line there is),
Seen and unseen.
So fragile a mechanism
To construct comprehension.
We settle to a silver lie,
Satisfied with thin smiles.

10
The eyes may tear something new from light.
New stranger seeds, planted in sight,
Doubts of how deep and shallow
All this reflected life might be.
God buried deep in the liver of a fool.
The Devil buried deeper in his reason.
Rise and fall, a history of empires
In this one small breath.
The same elements congeal
In madmen and in stars.
Somewhere a sun shall rise
And we shall be young
And beautiful again.

11
They push through our bitter fictions,
A stain within vast humid dream.
Spirit filled are the worlds elsewhere
Engraving slowly, they take form line by line.
Removed are the curls of nascence
A ticking clock, a creak, a shadow.

12
It is not malevolent to desire survival,
To thrust through to bigger life.
We are pushed and torn apart
As natural as morning, an evolution of sorts.
Best not, then, weigh nor judge,
(All, after all, the mockery of self
And self-existence).
A fly lands and takes off,
A pest, a nuisance, slow in slow air,
But what if, what if.

13
Our prevalence, our striding
Incessant self-portraiture:
A mistake, a neurosis, surely.
A better view must prevail,
A breaking through of stronger stories,
Radiant gods with heads of eagles,
Sky gods with lightning hair.
Beyond a mirror’s glass
That thin veil allowing silvered vision,
Presumes a surface woven illusion.
So many haunted eyes,

14
The utter strangeness of it.
A timed lapse, a void, a flicker.
Dark matter, the deep fog,
A sunless pressure, trenched, ocean deep.
Black smokers blistering more strange life.
We become utterly replaced again.

15
A charming magus chants destruction
And parturition in one caught breath.
The wonder is we do not see
How small and fast, how struggled and unfree,
How lost and how imprecise,
How glorious and how wrong.

16
The wise remain silent,
Watching skies unutterably changed.
I cannot say with whose voice for sure,
Or whence or from when.
A slight recorder.
A wave front.
A gravity well.
A spinning top
Each second more slowly.
The grate of opening
And closing doors.

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ADVENT

Bran’s tousled head hangs eloquent
From every night-burned alder.

Rust red are the wounded bracken hillsides,
Sour the long sedge.

Steep is the road,
All distance vapour.

Every hedge, a calligraphy of secrets
Taught by italic rains, slanted weather.

The trees stripped to syllables,
Each a sharp tongue and a scourge for empty vastness.

All glory hidden,
Sunk into the small, warm hearts of huddled things.

In barn and byre,
A shuffled silence,

Summer days mulled over,
Scented green against the cold.

Anointed, we are, with slow light,
Awaiting an older cermony:

A star in the east.
A sure opening and a soft, certain closing.

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Apple

A mist, apple-scented.
My love:
A lake that is not a lake,
A scinter of song,
Small eternal longing.
A thousand shattered dancing suns
Dying on the ripples
And reborn.

Afal

Mae niwl, persawrus-afal.
Mae fy nghariad:
A llyn sydd ddim yn llyn,
A sglein o gân,
hiraeth tragwyddol bach
A mil o haul dawnsio chwalu
Marw ar y crychdonnau a ail eni.

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These are some more pieces from my ongoing project, “Death and the Maiden (A romance)”, which developed from a couple of images from the V and A I have posted earlier. At the moment I have a series of layered images, becoming dreamy abstracts. These I may add text or calligraphic elements to. The verse imagery parallels and complements the pictures, I hope. Love, sex and death – how very…

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Peel back the curious eye,
A dancing touch to your innards,
Let it pierce the mysteries
Of your fleshly mechanics….

Your cool fingertips, smooth as pearl,
Slip down roads to sudden roundness,
A blessing of seed…..

Swimming where oceans clash,
The liquid crush, wave on wave.
Our very ground throbs feathered…

Pouring souls into circles
Achieving the fruit of life,
Its juice drips warm to sleep….

Your face, a half moon
In the sky of my desiring….

The most perfect words
Slip between the cracks of sleep…

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Cradled in bone
Time rocks to and fro.
We trespass not so far
Then flow smooth and fast
Into luminescence,
Penetrating softnesses,
Following sages, burning letters
Flying before us.
An unprecedented rivalry of substance,
A cloud of element and vapour.
Demure, then ferociously hungry
We exchange bodies for heat and flame
And roaring liquids.
Pouring vessels.
Spout of hard bliss.

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