Birthday Eve

Somehow

a bull snorted

silver

and the sky

hummed pink,

the cotton

richness of

clouds golden

with sunset.

A trail, a road

waving and

weaving across

Her firmament,

pied beauty

no possibility

of losing my way.

No detours

through other

chasms and cosmos

bright;

no other

celestial seas

or turtle shells.

Just this place.

A teeming,

beating heart

in time.

And this time,

with its waxing abundance,

bee-dance

and goldfinch sweetness,

that lines,

as ever,

the crags and mountains

and canyons and oceans

of my own

being.

Fragrant, fertile

and, yes,

fleeting.

I arrived

sighing with

life, death, life.

Bursting with joy,

yet, for months

I was grieving.

Three crows

Three crows

flew by:

black on the

pale blue

sky of dusk.

Pointed.

Determined

Flocking.

And I felt

the sweet

aches,

the strawberry-breath

of summer.

Spring continues

to bludgeon and

quake

with ferocious

storms and

riots of green

But I felt the

flicker

of something

more serene.

The calm of

days stretching

long and lean.

Languid hours.

Spring is sticky,

excruciating.

I long to love it,

but it feels like

a frothy mist

in which

I cannot catch

A foothold;

or perhaps

I still lack the grace

to flow and

know its torrents

when I step

blinking, in disbelief

out of Winter’s

nest.

But now,

I feel the spark.

The coursing.

The legs relishing,

lingering light,

speaking hope

blooming and bright.

An ancient

aliveness

after the pangs

of birth.

Pale sheets.

A ringing glow,

the great

sigh of the Earth.

Love song for house parties

I glide between

the revellers

who laugh and

sing:

ringing and aglow

in the warm-washed

gold

of pure, clear

fun.

I feel the

chords between

them all,

the symphony

of descants,

basses and

dissonance

that mould

and melt us

all together.

There’s the

delicate push-

pull of

exchange

as they float,

they don’t see,

that they crest a shining

sea,

ceaselessly;

and their vessels,

beaming,

hauling and rolling

are the sturdiest

and safest fleet.

The stars blink,

sighing, at

rest and at

ease.

Essential

but, in this moment,

at least,

not desperately prayed for

when a cosmic

radiance

dances and surfs

from lips, eyes and

guts,

unseen,

but palpable,

pulsing.

Darkness visible

The sadness
is sweet and sharp:
a cacophany,
a Universe
of ocean
that rages and
rocks
of which I
can only
provide glimpses
through
the glints of
salt stars.
The cavernous
pit, and expanse
of echoing promised-pain
makes all the darkness
terrifying
even the luxurious
shadows of safety
that beckon
softly.
A refuge, a
sanctuary of
stillness and repose.
This doubleness
conflicting
commingling
is mad
madness
maddening.
But it is
ancient,
as old as Moon
herself.
Bedded in me,
my soft peachy flesh
of limbs and heart,
there is space
and containment. And
I hold and keep the
embers
that makes this
darkness visible.

I squirm and thrill

I squirm

and thrill

with sherbet

in my mouth

as I dip into

the inky pools of

irony.

Black,

hilarious,

that

I long to sit

cross-legged

at the feet;

feel

inequipped

besieged

at the front.

What a

mockery

a show

that I

should sow

seeds

when the

soil

feels more

like my soul,

in limbo.

Not

ever-so-

-young,

but feeling

more and more

like a novice

each day.

This life,

experience,

so vast

at once

mountainous

fluid and

fragile:

made from nothing

signifying it all.

Dusk is for fireflies

Dusk is for

fireflies and

lime liminality:

night cushions

and enraptures,

no mock stars.

I gasp

then fold in

and in.

The plunge

is breathful and

receptive.

I lay there,

my back finally

unwrinkled,

and I didn’t

wince or yearn

from myself.

Bathed in breath

I listened:

I heard

a whale song,

a lament.

Mournful, sighing

for children

who have lost their way;

who supped on milk,

and forgot how

to dance in starlight

and kiss the Earth

with grubby, curious hands.

Dreamers, with indigo souls

as deep as the

murmurs of night,

distracted by

false light

absorbed and obsessed

with their own

shadows.

The owls are coming,

their eyes bright,

with wings

ready to

shift and glide

over the currents

of torment.

Clear-seeing,

rich is silence

cutting through

the chaos, illusion

and deceit,

to gentler

enigmatic shores.

Moon baby

The channels run silver,

Moon baby.

New moon

I bloom

in the black,

ready to receive;

listening

to the whispers

of the stars,

now that

our glowing orb,

pale,

is in darkness

transfixed.

We kiss.

Enveloped in

softness

I turn

my hopeful face

to the vault

as I dance

on the threshold

of the twenty eight.

My dreams

run like trains;

planes hit by

waves;

caught in a

building

burning

and fashions

march by.

Saint Campbell,

Mother’s son,

what initiation

is this?

Of the body,

my body,

that rings

when we kiss?

The first was little and apple green

The first was

little and apple

green

I beamed to see it,

as it coiled around

my fingers

neat

playful:

my friendly

Messenger

with a pink fork

and a smile.

But then,

the next night,

another came

(I was ready for bigger

leagues?)

a wider face,

not mean,

but I was

trapped in sand

up to my waist

and I was

afraid

that it moved

beneath me.

No cute coils,

but a waxy

olive head

with penetrating

eyes

like it knew me.

And the sand was

trapping

as I felt it move

and heave.

Dusk was falling

and my hips

wouldn’t budge.

I wanted to

befriend it too,

but it felt so big

and all I could do

was kick my feet.

Then,

as though

the decision

was made for me,

I coughed

and scales

and a head

fell out

of my mouth

dry

olive green

and the thing

was dead.

I grieved,

I grieved,

I had done it

all wrong

I feared too much:

the crust of

skin

lay in the

brittle sand,

as the sky turned purple.

I just didn’t know how to be,

friend

or pupil;

I couldn’t sink into

surrender,

celebrating

the mystery

by the shores

of the sea.

 

They wore flannel

They wore flannel

Scarlet red.

A riot

against a green

Impressionist’s backdrop,

Van Gogh’s colour wheel

whispering

yearning in

Roerich’s ready moment.

A theatre

heaving:

the systems and

structures rattled

and bellowing,

like a giant ship

thundering from steam.

Primordial screams

from the mouths

of elderly elites,

pagans, all,

and a quivering

bassoon:

a vision

bursting from the

confines of its

frame

admonishing and wry

lit in ancient blue light.

Circles, circles

and rounds

and ground.

A sinking incorporation

with a marble mask

and limbs

out of joint.

We ravishers

our flesh made fabric

In flannel, flannel

to cool

to slow

to remember

our pounding

relationship with

the expansion and

contraction,

the soils of our

lifeblood and its

freshness and

sweetnesses

long lost

long found.

A kiss seals,

stamping certifies

we are knit

awaken

awaken

awaken:

the rip-roaring

of a womb’s

subjects

partying and prancing:

whilst the void, it

lurks,

and bears abound.

There is fire burning

There is fire burning

in the world.

Forests are collapsing and crumbling

Ablaze

With human hellfire.

The animals and cultures

of feathered, furred and

Chlorophylled life

terrified, perishing.

The heat rising everywhere

Pregnant women labouring under

the heat

No escape on the beaches

A mobile eruption of heat

Scattering ash confetti

Sanctifying the destruction,

years in the making.

The sacred lands, buckling

Drowned, burnt,

Tortured.

It groans under the weight of

greed:

Made manifest by scarlet flames

The sacrificial fires

are out of control

Punishing sacrilege

And yet,

it is the vulnerable

who suffer the most.

Ancient communities

and barbarised peoples who are hurting

the most.

And I sit here.

I greet the swan family every day,

tripping with joy and wonder

at the sanctity of kinship

and little ones.

On my narrow strip of rubber

within my four walls

I reflect

I try to go inward

so as to help with the struggle

outward.

And I do not do enough

And I cannot do enough.

I find refuge in my breath

and yet,

There are black people

In Minneapolis beaten and oppressed

and the injustice rolls on and on

and on.

I watch the canal

tenderly flow.

This haven of trees, grasses and

animals,

singing, honking, whispering and

breathing,

rippling and ever so, ever so

alive

as these dying days

drag on:

It is a glory.

The crescent moon

Pale

peeks through

our canopy of

tentative, ringing

Covid blue.