Inks bled from our stones

 

We found it seems, from knowing how we loved,

The grain of wealths within us. We did not ask

The names of these crystals, these scintillating ores

Whose veins ran deep into us, opalescent, ours;

Or how some semi-precious stones could, when crushed,

Form the base of colours, inks bled from the rocks.

 

 

For Blair: for discovering in me, and in us both, such a deep, rich and varied wealth of colours. For appreciating these qualities, your careful handling of this fragile structure; for holding parts of me up to the light, revealing layers of iridescence and beauty preserved inside, making me shine. For being just entirely beautiful, through and through. 

Inks bled from our stones

 

We found it seems, from knowing how we loved,

The grain of wealths within us. We did not ask

The names of these crystals, these scintillating ores

Whose veins ran deep into us, opalescent, ours;

Or how some semi-precious stones could, when crushed,

Form the base of colours, inks bled from the rocks.

 

 

For Blair: for discovering in me, and in us both, such a deep, rich and varied wealth of colours. For appreciating these qualities, your careful handling of this fragile structure; for holding parts of me up to the light, revealing layers of iridescence and beauty preserved inside, making me shine. For being just entirely beautiful, through and through. 

The Constancy of Stars

 

I confess that I am tired of these same, old stars.

It is said that they wax and wane, like a distant tide,

Lights over changing water. But in my eyes

They haven’t changed – I doubt they ever did,

 

A constellation is stone, not life and fire.

They were always there, and cannot care for us.

It is said they are born and die: but from down here

They are not mortal, not subject to the force

 

Of alteration. Their honesty, plainly hid,

Is nothing. And so we live, inconstant in desires,

While they wait constant, markers for the tide,

As we drift through, so tired of these same, old stars.

 

 

I’m actually in a good mood today. Honest. 

Works of Mercy

 

If we must die, let it happen. Have it
Captured in stillness: If truly, you and I
Must lay to rest, then let it happen under
The easel. It might be best: and I daresay
That, when old Caravaggio dropped dead –
After all the rumours, the interpretations
Of his sultry gods and their mortal acolytes –
He danced to the floor, one arm arced
In mid-descent, his entire, raging form
Naked in mortality. I think he would have
Appreciated the flesh tones, contours wrought
To utter relief in the gesture, his composition
Final as he fell; his lily-white fragility
Left to lie on his own grave, slave of art.

 

If you don’t know much about Caravaggio, look him up. You’ll surprise yourself. 

 

Icarus in August

 

 

It’s a single pane. Looking up, it’s one
Panel of Klein Blue on canvas. An airplane
Distantly draws its chalk in a perfect line
Tangential to the widest vanishing point,
Eases out silent, leaves distance, and is gone.

 

 

Look up, at the falling down. 

4th August 2015

 

I suppose part of it is doubt. If I return

And the sofa is empty, except you lying there,

Your silence gives me little space to sit.

I’m with you, but without; I’ve had to learn

How motionlessness is gesture, an affair

Of violence, a tiredness in the heart.

 

I let my briefcase rest, ignoring it,

Walk past it, sullen, a thief in our own home.

You do not wake, yet tear the house apart;

You care for nothing much but every bit

Of nothing. You say you did not read my poem,

Or see my coming in. I’m glad for that,

 

For if you’d seen my face, I fear you might

Not tell this stranger, “Darling, in you come.”

 

 

With love. 

 

Tired

 

Being tired yourself is awful. Of course it is. But living with someone who is tired, that comes with a quite different sense of helplessness. Simple language and construction for this one. 

 

If there was some fine smelling-salt to hold

Beneath your face – a candle, in praise of you –

I’d wake you. If there were some genuine crystal,

Bloodier than red, weighted like a heart

In the hand, I’d press its lifeblood magic,

Share its fire; if manna were a food

I’d serve a feast of spirit: no, more than that,

I’d make enough for lunch tomorrow too,

Tupperware the joy of life. If there

Were some fast liquor, like sparks of lightning, poured,

I’d give a shot. Should amber-scented oils

Rubbed into your tired muscles to the trick,

I could persuade the Gordian knot to part:

I wish that there were something I could do.

But somehow, there appears no potency

In art or nature that can keep this warmth

Between us. I’ll do what I can, but please,

Please, do not fall asleep.