Yesterday, after 13 years of unconditional love,
Charlie allowed death to overtake him
He’d been slowing down anyway:
The old ticker on the blink,
Arthritis in his legs and more.
The old trooper staggered on.
Out with me on his final night,
We plod through the wet grass:
Making our time last.
Wednesday 26th January 2022 7:47 pm
Days pass unenlighteningly
In the other room
Mourning in outer space
Meetings on Zoom. Buried near enough.
Splendid unknown unlnowns assist me
You, who hardly know me, prevaricate,
Intimidated by the gravitas of life,
Soldiers, the saddest of alchemists,
Turn a trick on the front line
Turn wine into water, blood into hell;
At the summit of the shroud,
Above clouds, tattered prayer fl...
Wednesday 26th January 2022 12:57 am
Let’s keep the light we’re given
When our store of words is fled
Empty as a music box
Or a box to house the dead;
When the bridge between living and dying
Has crumpled into the dust
Of a Wee, sleekit, cow’rin, tim’rous beastie*
Then all of our days are cussed.
We dream in tints, and think in shades,
When the gates of the new Jerusalem
Appear then quickly fade
On the brink...
Tuesday 25th January 2022 9:21 pm
Goodbye my Sufi friends and you, my lover;
Nothing now exists to connect you to me
Tayyar is honourable and full of good intent
I will rise from the trap of the world
I will ask you to be my servant in paradise
You are my dancer, I am your poet, we can laugh
Together on days when I taste the rain-drift-clouds.
When you sew I can watch you and fall in love~
Again I remember our fir...
Monday 24th January 2022 12:24 pm
It was a bird who brought the news
Of the fall of our city.
Its impregnable walls breached
Its streets and palaces running
With Christian blood.
You'd rather freeze than be conquered
I will freeze in another sea.
Another city will be better for me.
So many late-Roman artefacts smashed
The sultan prays east, not west
Our death sentence is written˙
and my heart is dead and buried.
Saturday 22nd January 2022 8:45 pm
“Even amidst fierce flames the golden lotus can be planted"
- Sylvia Plath's epitaph
O! daughter dear, on this mid-western afternoon,
When I can see all the way to Sacramento, I cry
For you, Ariel-blue, in all your golden-girlhood,
Too lovely for a life of pettiness and strife
You caught a boat to England, never returned.
No Nazi goblin me, an extraordinary Jew like you,
Saturday 22nd January 2022 5:43 pm
It is the dying of the day
A ferment of tenses
Leads me up cul de sacs.
Where my vision lingers
On a shimmerin
My mood mirrors
The sparkling frost,
Loss upon loss.
I've gone now
Suspicious of the silence within,
Outside all is wild,
Clouds scud the colour of blood.
Sunshine soaks the sk...
Thursday 20th January 2022 7:38 pm
"After-comers cannot guess the beauty been."‘Binsey Poplars’, Gerard Manley-Hopkins SJ, 1879
the emptiness of moonlight
strikes me dumb
shadows flicker like an old film
cats eerily call, each to each,
cats yowl, strike a pose,
frozen, with fur mantled by shadow;
so much idiosyncratic beauty given to us –
see the clouds scoop across the face
of the moon as the night-sky spe...
Monday 17th January 2022 5:28 pm
The hen bird sits squatty on a branch
Feathers fluffed up against the snow
The late November light declines
Thin straggles of light, like Tibetan
Prayer flags, amid the skeletal trees
People hunch up, faces down, hurry
Into the electric-cave they call home.
For me anything is better than this self
Deception. I am defamiliarized, glinting,
Illuminating inner correspondences, lonely
Sunday 16th January 2022 5:23 pm
― Malcolm Lowry, Under the Volcano
sweats with frustration
the functionary loves his power
to make people wait hour after hour
they sway and smell of drink, unimportantly;
Sunday 16th January 2022 2:12 am
― Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar
Sacked from his Official Post
Saturday 15th January 2022 12:17 am
Manchester changed the world: vegetarianism feminism trade unionism communism. Upstarts shared ideas above their station, every snotty street-fighter of a radical volte-faced the nation. Brawlin n buzzin in Manchester streets mil...
Thursday 13th January 2022 3:34 pm
"As flies to wanton boys are we to the gods; They kill us for their sport." (King Lear, 4.1. 37–38)
Veils of disguise,
fall from my eyes
I have the virus today.
Will it drift away?
signs and wonders?
This ground will remember me~
like winds across the ocean
like dolphins in the sea -
Right in my core
things I can’t recall:
a silence pre...
Monday 10th January 2022 8:03 pm
With the golden eyes of a pharaoh –
This lioness extends her paw to me -
I am not deceived. I am just walking prey.
Her forebears brought down rhino –
Under the sweltering skies of the high veldt:
Lithe and supple, fleet of foot,
She covers this northern turf
With ceaseless leaps and bounds.
Her loyalty is only bounded by her pride,
Affiliation is to the death.
No treachery in her wo...
Saturday 8th January 2022 10:10 pm
Splashing through rain to hospital
to where my heart lies weeping,
I hold her hand as she lies sleeping,
and so it goes, and so it goes.
My mother wears the ring she wore
more than seventy years before,
a girl pledged to a sailor-boy,
who'd lived through war,
survived, a vision in her eyes
and so it goes, and so it goes.
This orphan made it home to her
to build ...
Saturday 8th January 2022 12:34 am
An old, Welsh witch once said this:
“Taliesin, don’t be sad if you’re alone
On Ynys Môn you have battled mightily
Despair will bring us no advantage.
No man sees what supports him
Courage is invisible. Study The Mabinogion.
God will not violate his promises.
We must suffer in Gwyddno’s weir
Where our stand against the invaders
Will end in defeat! We must learn how to fail.
Thursday 6th January 2022 8:57 pm
Staring at the red candle,
remembering the smell of patchouli oil,
mixed with the Red Leb, from all those years ago.
On Saturday 4th July, 1846 the London Daily News
extolled the virtues of this peculiar
Indian oil in preventing moths.
Nothing to do with hippies, except India,
and olfactory-based imagined communities from the past
that have a grip that lasts.
Ad agencies now ...
Thursday 6th January 2022 8:19 pm
Drinking where the riverbed was dry
Trees in the wind trembling with love." Sam Beam
Sent the hot wind of endurance
Wednesday 5th January 2022 7:27 pm
“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” – JS Mill (not Edmund Burke)
St Sophia’s cathedral in Constantinople,
Ecclesia Sanctae Sophia,
Surrounded by minarets.
Built in 537 AD (nearly 1500 years ago).
The patriarchal cathedral of Divine Wisdom
In the imperial capital of Byzantium, Constantinople.
It is the largest church in the Christian east.
Tuesday 4th January 2022 12:56 pm
Mires my mood
New Year has many tales to tell
The future a hostage to silicon~
And heavy metals. Nuclear too.
We must make our stand here,
at this end of the world.
a relative of the seal
whose long dives used to fill our imaginations
with bubbles. No more. Plastic saw...
Sunday 2nd January 2022 5:04 pm