december 2020

 

                      (i)

 

...are there no answers, no reasons

for this terrifying music

 

for this black eucharist

lying on your tongue

 

or the smouldering horizon

approaching your feet

 

no, no answers, no reasons

just a wild, delirious pirouette

 

out along the cliff-edge

tomorrow already confused with tomorrow

 

this pitiless vertigo

pushing against your eyes

 

begging you to kiss

the smouldering terror

 

of this unspeakable

unanswerable ballardry

 

lying at your feet

the tongue of black steel

 

the only weapon with

no reasons, no answers...

 

 

 

                 (ii)

 

...stay away, stay back or risk

the world’s mistaken touch

 

the feel of bullets

as they pass slowly through your heart

 

through into that other earth

the human void

 

the human soil

with its mortifying cascades

 

its intense solitudes

its suns and viruses

 

that quietly track your eyes

quietly reconstitute your flesh

 

and then move on, replete

encoded, safe

 

so, lest you fall, step back

because the breath is upon you

 

of an unremitting universe

its passion for zeros

 

passing slowly through your body

this leviathan which has never once closed its eyes...

 

 

 

 

                      (iii)

  

...supposing I had reached out

to some beckoning aesthetic

 

would I still have wept

for that bird, its feathers ripped out

 

and all but its head crushed into the road

would I still have heard

 

that unforgettable, unforgivable

laugh of the deus ex machina

 

echoing between the hills

this cruel sound of a galaxy

 

being dragged up over the skyline

its gemstone darkness rising

 

and glittering with blood

and if I had reached out

 

for some uncommon justice

would I still have seen

 

the birth of these stars as my birth

or the killing of that bird as my killing

 

so what then is it that beckons

what is it in me that weeps...

 

 

 

                   (iv)



...tempt the muse only with that which hurts

reveal only those invisible oceans

 

that have always wrapped

the earth about the soul

 

those indelible suspicions

that somewhere, something is not right

 

this so-called mellifluous sanity

with its trick of disappearing

 

beyond the reach of memory

beyond that point of focus

 

where what is truly immemorial

always, always hurts

 

the waiting muse, the watching muse

curious to see who will be next 

 

to wrap the earth

in some inexplicable terror

 

these specimens, these traces, these meteors

that prove something, somewhere is poised

 

to tempt the mind

to make even the stones confess...

 

 

 

                        (v)

 

...is this face, this countenance not a silvered mask

a paradise of maybes

 

an alloy so brightly polished

the drama is blinding

 

the looks so telling

that the metallic veins

 

of the everyman shine

with fluorescent blood

 

brilliant with birth

brilliant with imaginary words

 

these counterfeit realities

this dance of maybes

 

this simultaneous brilliance

it is all a masquerade that tells us

 

we are not truly born

until our mothers die

 

until the scythe moves

and perhaps not even then

 

it is the cavernous face

the open stage for just one life

 

just one drama of little or no consequence...