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Posts Tagged ‘Wales’

THE CLOUD

The cloud is on the hill.

Words will come.

What the stark trees say.

What the rivers say.

A wood pigeon

welcomes the warm rain.

I have been away,

but returned to this silence

where the words are old

and make themselves.

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TALIESIN ECHOES

“I have been the radiance of stars”

Standing still feeling the heat leave.

Pierced, made nothing, made all

By the silent kissing of a million stars.

Hanging headfirst over a boiling void of words,

Whispered, muttered down the centuries to now.

How beauty strikes us dumb

And then, how pain creeps in.

The holding and the letting go that

We never learn.

What the river says, what the river says.

Ye warriors, so like primroses.

Ye poets, so like hedgerows.

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DAY DISSOLVING

Falling waters,

thread white,

tumbling.

.

from that small distance,

the wheeling raven,

soundless.

.

So woven together

are the layers of the day:

a plaid of wind ripples the lake surface,

as if it were about to say something.

.

we shall dissolve

from light

into light.

.

slowly, slowly

down the side of Y Garn

roll clouds

mixed with sunlight.

.

the view

slides sideways

and is erased.

there is a new silence

that comes

just before the rain.

.

this season-

a balance point

clustered at branch tips.

.

we shall dissolve

from light

into light.

.

on dark smudged slopes,

the shout

of purple heathers.

a scree of broken moments,

small enough

to commit to memory.

.

falling waters

woven together.

moments such as these

make and melt worlds.

.

we shall dissolve

from light

into light.

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AWEN

Awen in the deep floating night.

Awen in the river darkness

Awen in the drops of rain

and the wordless cool vessel of being.

Awen in the scent of wood smoke

and between the lights and between the shadows.

The seesaw of the world,

this fragile weight of balanced moments

haunted by what has gone and seeded by thought

not yet flowered, not yet fruited.

The seed within the cell,

within the roots of blood

and the roads of time.

We are within. We are within.

The awen, our eternal passing breath.

—-

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DHRUPAD 23 ( Pema Özer in Autumn drift)

Slow slow slowly now

slowly now taste the shapes the sounds as they form

as they fall as they flow slow with the colours of autumn

slow the autumn falling slow to mists and coming going coming mists

slow no need to seek the means the meaning to move on.

Sun will not set sun will not rise sun standing still at midnight at midday

as if as if that sage, enjoying his beer enjoying the warmth of a lazy afternoon

dusty road in the mountains distant waterfalls sheep bleating

stop stop stop the sun and hold it there, slow slow to savour moments

out of inside of within wrapped up in time time time, the breath slow slow,

the words slow slow, the same the same the same, but not exactly not precisely,

not a landscape flickers by a landscape moulded forgot seen forgot seen seen

inhabited become sun-filled,

and the trees all autumn and slow breath, fall of leaves and drifting mists

and star-filled, star-filled, the river roaring darkness like that, like that,

that is like this, like this, slow slow unfolding with no end a measured walk

a stroll another beer,

watching time relax

and stay a while

.

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SUGARLOAF (Cambrian Rift)

It is a sweet hill – the steep border between

The nodding bracken and the water meadows.

.

A straight road to heaven,

Last descendent of those ancient hills

That sit before the throne.

.

A knife-edge of rock slicing the wriggling roads.

.

Climb up it, and you shall see wonders

Where silence tumbles into cold wind.

.

Below, trees sway ranked in autumn colours.

They await the battle of winter.

.

Here, the tattered sky catches in grasses

And thin earth throbs with distance.

.

Road and river, far below, glow golden –

The land made soft by the flow of Towy

Fades down to the warmer west,

Down to the sea beyond horizon’s hills.

.

Breath and heart and hope rise here:

Who would not long for wings?

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SOLSTICE LIGHT

Listen, listen, the slow light of solstice morning.

Time shuddering, time standing still.

A word wind muttering indistinct, its rhythms and intent

As steady as oars would be, as steady as oar strokes across a glassy sea.

Listen, listen. We were all in one band, a magnificent number.

Heading west ( always heading west into darkness there, into the mists).

One raised his voice – the song we all knew.

One of those songs whose words would be ridiculous, banal,

Without the tune. Whose chorus impossibly united the living and the lost.

The glass sea slid by. Time ran out.

Some said it was a hard coming of it that year, but it was not.

It was not. It was as easy as breathing.

The reasons, so reasonable. The logic, implacable.

The rhetoric, bombastic and irrefutable.

.

The watchmen were silent, uncommunicative.

Impossible it was to know the minds of the doorkeepers.

We were there to free the imprisoned,

There to reclaim what had been lost,

There to carry home what had been taken.

Voiceless one by one we fell into silence there.

Burning bright as phosphor bombs falling from the air.

Bright as sparks hammered from the anvil.

The prize was claimed, as it always is,

The light released, the cave broken upon,

The tomb unsealed, the spell broken, the curse trod down.

But the world now, irrevocably changed.

Seven with breath, seven with tears still falling,

Seven tired and justified. Seven wan and clustered stars

Backward looking, racing on.

In a world, in a morning, not ours.

.

The slim waning moon floating into the stormy dawn,

Losing its light minute by minute. No longer noticed.

Fading into day.

I have cast out on the grass, seeds for the small brown birds,

For the hungry and the cold.

The eagles and the hawks have gone. The songsters silent,

The stately waterbirds, the watching herons forgotten in the fluttering rush.

I shall sing the names, uphold the excuse,

a psalmist counting off lines in a cold cell: the cajoling verses of warrior kings

For fickle vengeful gods, the rosary of blood red beads, the genealogies,

Until the shivering silver-edged awen fails, tumbling into mute silence,

Voiceless watching an unextraordinary morning.

.

If we had not been so strident, so golden,

Could we have passed the doors unscathed?

Had we understood what was asked of us,

Has we not mistaken guileless honesty as elaborate deception,

A trick to catch us out,

Could we be in those halls still feasting?

There with no needs to forget,

no weight of dust and falling radiant starlight upon us.

No need to elaborate the litany of the dead,

Compose harmonious laments, gather together the names,

as if they meant anything any more, as if we remembered

Their bright eyes, their smiles, their warm strong hands,

Their words around the fires.

.

The ashes are cold and must be cleared now.

Reset the hearth. Begin again.

The splash of sweeping oars and the crack of canvas receding.

Our bright futures looking westwards: the new approaching night.

It is not what it could be,

Not what was promised.

But it is what it is.

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