june 2020

 

                                  (i)

 

...once, without warning, the night walked

right through me

 

leaving behind its transgressions

its similitudes, its sins

 

the fears that I became

and the dreams that arrived soon after

 

tumbling out of the heavens

clusters of stars gibbering with light

 

the darkness drained of purpose

no wonder our words have always sounded

 

like intruders bullying reality

insulting the millions already butchered

 

and no-one knows this better

than those who travel with the night

 

scattering their conscience as they go

this cohort of the damned

 

with their fearful confetti

celebrating the end of words

 

the end of truth

this transgression stripped of language...

 

 

 

                        (ii)

 

...take the autumn, take it away

no-one wants its fast grins

 

its wily, me-first cunning

throw it up there onto the moon

 

where its scent cannot reach the soul

hideous magician of decay

 

waving its death-caps in the air

its bright-red conceits

 

this lover of slime

whose eyelids are always half-closed

 

whose jagged fingernails

always snag on everything they touch

 

but what, in that case

are these squealing primates doing

 

pouring out across space

mothering worlds

 

and kissing every mouth they can find

with the fevers of the autumn

 

can they not see the deathless eternity

watching them approach...

 

 

 

 

                    (iii)

 

...it is the sun which writes the poem

but it is the poem that unmasks the man

 

laying bare the hieroglyphs

and icons crawling over his face

 

like beads of slow blood

that suddenly seem to rhyme with everything

 

these dreams of dreams

transcribed by stars

 

by colossal shrouds

of imploding fires

 

that perpetually eat the universe

swallowing even immensity itself

 

until everything begins

to rhyme with everything

 

and a day and a night

are the strangest of all things

 

and as men sit counting pebbles

to understand the logic of their existence

 

poetry shall as a slow shadow

pass unnoticed through the earth...