Billings

Tarmacadam cracks
Observed from above,
Parallel lines
And tattooed loves.

Even amateurs might spot
The starless ones
Down a garden path,
For they do not yawn

When others yawn,
They do not laugh
When others laugh
And empty all the aquaducts.

These then, their heels,
Photograph albums,
Lever arch and plastic meals,
Dog collar minus a dog,

Throat had somehow
Caught a frog,
Newspaper memories
Join the dots.

Ballad Of The Lame Duck

We travelled together
To a country pub,
Twice down the lane
And called ‘The Lame Duck‘.
Hillsides abounded,
You could roll Cheddar downward,
Seats of stone
Beside summer-westward.
The riverlet rilled,
Smells from the grill,
A rusty sign twinged
With sounds of relief
As we entered a darkness
Devoid of belief.

On your thumb you twisted
An emerald ring,
And down in my heart
I heard your soul sing
Songs of sufficiency,
Songs of lament,
Funerary orations
Deeds, necessary, and
Seed preparations,
Epitaphios Logos,
Stored within an amulet.
You turned to me and slowly said
Do not be sad that I am dead;
An eye for an eye,
A tooth for a bed,
Cat got my tongue
A seventh judge said.

Many more crossed
The same riverbed
Before you stepped into
The last wildnerness.
Wide expanses,
Better unsaid,
I roamed alone
And into the red.

Mirror Image

This is me
In the mirror,
Unless
It is not;
Who can say
One way
Or another?
So I walked through
Shimmers of smooth
Glazed glass
To find out, departed,
Whether I would last,
Assessed my self
And was no better off.

Then you strolled by the mirror
And inside I was trapped.
I rapped against its surfaces
As unmoved you moved by.
I had to bear witness
As you lived
And you died;
I slumped behind that dreary
Veneer
And for several years
Here and there
Cried.

I found a way,
To step around that mortal frame,
And could see myself there,
I appeared just the same
As I watched myself say
“This is me
In the mirror,
Unless
It is not;
One way
Or another,
Who can say
And who cannot?”

Aphelion

Snow falling on the sea,
I noticed how snowflakes floated awhile
And then we disappeared.

Somewhere out there is Sun,
But sunlight is not for everyone
Down here.

The lathered cabesters returning
And a chacking huer’s thirsty
As he conducts the fairmaids home.

How beautiful the ocean
If only from a skiff,
How beautiful the drop

If only from a cliff,
How beautiful the missing
If only we may live.

Somewhere out there is Moon;
Aphelion wilderness
With a little less gloom.

N.B Lathered, Cabester, Chacking and Huer are words from Cornish dialect. Fairmades or Fairmaids is an old Cornish word for pilchards.

Lake Of The Woods

What was the time in Ottawa
When that boy ran full pelt
Towards a delapidated pier upon

An icy lake to make his shape
Where conifers colluded
And memory occluded

This day, it once occurred.
Plenty (or was it a few) anglers
In lumberjack furs

Dangling their lines
In holes through snow
As they blow in their hands

And distances blur
Between water and skies
For hope of a bite

Oblivious to that parabolic
Arc of his last jump, his leap,
Neap tide, a void of pride,

The police had never been so far
From the scene of his crime,
But you can’t pursue spirit

With a Horseman in Time.
Something, always, is lost
Between the old and the new,

Between a thought in sheets
And all written words, Love.
One day I’ll remember this,

Sipping my oxtail soup,
Inconvenience, true,
Tired, yes, and mute.

The Commute

Someday soon, not so long,
Just after a whitening Sun
Has called time Noon,
Contracted, blanched,
All of this, remember
Will be finally far, far gone.
Thoughts and inward feelings
Will yet dissemble and
Be divorced
From the organic source
Like feet once on these bleachers
Now pound heavenly boards;
An event horizon in blue and
A new obilivion,
So why not be a little kinder now
To just, someday,
Someone.

I am, like you,
Flesh and Bones,
My life the size of a grain of sand
Yet my heart could traverse
A universe
To the syncopation of Love.
Isn’t this humanity’s
Latest and greatest
Conundrum?
Karma, make me a dog
If I might bring happiness
As endlessly you turn,
So why not be a little kinder now,
To just, someday,
Someone,
Even if that one someone
Some other day,
As you peruse the newness,
Adjust your hair, brushed,
Coffee brewed,
Commuting to work,
Is you, my love.

After All

Under margrave groves
Of peach blossom trees
There flows the falls
Of a winding creek,

Their blossoms’ aromas
Are mild and are meek,
But those torrents below
Are baleful and bleak.

My iris-blown beard
Diurnal and straw,
But under my chin
Eternal tears pool.

Snowfall cloaking
After all,
But when the snow melts
(If not long before),

Those bodies revealed,
Their mortal hands hold
The one different future,
Distant and cold.

Ode To My Father

When I opened my mouth
It was you, yes, who spoke;
When I then fell asleep
It was you, yes, who woke.
You colluded with love
And waters then broke.

By the skin of my teeth,
No skin on my nose,
You scooped all the futures
And curled up my toes;
No bedtime stories
And nowhere to go.

We drove down to Dorset
With one empty seat,
I rushed to the school gates
With no one to greet;
You opened a door
And the door was my Fate.

Daily they’re grieving
In pubs and the streets
For those overboard
In the bayou and creeks;
My numbers are letters
And the letters are Greek.

The Wheel

This is the music,
This is the dance,
This is the child
And this is the trance.

Hear all their whistles,
A belt with blue bells,
The buyers are selling
The source of our spells.

I tried to swim
For the dim furthest shore,
But Spring tides returned me
To churning Death’s door.

Chinese lanterns,
Mountain-side dell,
Where it all went
I could no longer tell.