Poetry Blog by John E Marks (2017)
Shaking when I walked into his shop,
Thoughts of the beautiful, white Crescent Moon
Lost in the ebony sky of late November.
Fled like winter sleet melted,
The glint of the knife on that coal black night
The one in the hoodie, with no facial tattoo,
Lunged forward screaming into thin air:
“Put the fucking money in there!”
So what'd he get? In the blink of an eye?
Sunday 17th December 2017 8:46 pm
Near is very far
A wandering soul.
There’s a vastness that appals
Of the Christie, this Monday morning
Meeting Emile, yes, named after Jean Jacque’s eponymous hero.
Married at the weekend, it has spread,
He fears he’ll soon be dead.
His Caribbean lilt
Saturday 9th December 2017 11:03 pm
Six months now since the slaughter
On the 22nd May 2017 at an Ariana concert
22 murdered, 116 with injuries they'll carry
All their lives. The target, the young and carefree.
Before, I loved the rainy mornings of my life
And I never thought that friendly mountain passes
Would ferry me away
But now happy times are seldom
And the rain runs away with me.
Saturday 25th November 2017 10:20 pm
Faoin trá seo de ghaineamh agus sliogáin
Feicim íomhá na farraige rollta.
Frámaí agus seithí talún nua-aimsithe nua
Na fairsinge leathan seo; Siúilim feadh an aill:
Fágann an duine ar thaobh na gaoithe,
Trilobites leabaithe, faoi bhun mo chosa
Grianchloch agus Muscovite ón eibhir
Na gaoithe agus na dtonnta a thug an t-am
Fóicphointí farraige, carraigeacha i bhfolach, phluai...
Tuesday 7th November 2017 11:00 am
How can I write about the famine
Born into the welfare state
Brought up on a council estate?
But I read and I know
That the Warehouses up and down
England’s west coast
Were stuffed with grain
While babes in Connaught,
Mayo and Donegal,
Were left to die,
Saturday 21st October 2017 1:12 am
A cold-hearted man with a gun in his hand
He loved to control, did this man with no soul.
He died long ago, in a land made of snow,
Was soon born again, in a world without end.
He lived in that cave right next to the grave
Of his brother, his wife, his lover, I mean
Just someone obscene. He worked and made money.
He thought it was funny,
His nature was such, so-cold to the...
Friday 20th October 2017 10:28 pm
Morning maniac music
Shakes me awake
Those who once brought hope
Now mired in hate
Over the mountain, clouds scud
There's blood on the floor
Christendom has fallen
Collapsed from within,
Deep, deep in the mire of sin.
Oh! I'm glad I never fell in love with you
I try to speak
But I cannot begin to say...
Sunday 15th October 2017 1:56 am
So scared tonight, he made me feel as helpless
As I am. He’s looking at me as I write
Cataracts on his eyes, panting. Fear. No disguise.
The fear he feels at the strangeness of the universe,
The inexplicability of life. The Thunder..
But he knows I love him and he takes heart
As I tempt him into a cave under my desk
And Yes! He has finally settled down –
At least a bit – panting still bu...
Thursday 17th August 2017 1:00 am
Oh! the lack of light, all day twilight!
Can anybody live through this visual misery?
Even the trees have no leaves.
And the cold!
We wake to the rumbling thunder of blood,
Pumping hearts, this shadow and I squeeze
Into the thick silences of trees.
Now the dark lights
Of Christmastide, drift, flux and flicker in this breeze of
Wednesday 16th August 2017 11:42 pm
No buggy-pushing for you, my son
It’s done. You’re dead.
26 days we had you
Saw you. Felt you. Touched you.
And I am snake-bitten
Clouded and red
For all crumbles under you.
Penumbra: winter tree
Rain-shine on our time
You darling boy. So hard born, I sang.
Now even your blanket-smell has gone.
Nobody mentions you.
Kieran Sean Ja...
Monday 7th August 2017 6:27 pm
On a windless night
I feel the house shake
A child swirls rises
I smoke. Sit stil.l
In this twenty-first century
The wind screams, rises.
The wind screeches
Scattering thoughts, paper
Rocking foundations, shattering monuments.
Outside I gather windfalls in my night clothes
Images scatter like dust.
I forget. Remember....
Monday 7th August 2017 6:10 pm
And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony about Jesus and because of the word of God. Revelation 20:4
All across the Nineveh plain the lights are going out
Crosses driven into the hearts of the last of Mesopotamia’s
Christians. These Assyrians, speaking Aramaic, the language
Of Christ, have been loyal throughout the long cent...
Sunday 9th July 2017 9:02 pm
a leaf on a tree
enough for me.
Saturday 8th July 2017 1:14 am
Lorca’s blood wedding
Packed fulll of vaginas bleeding
Into lemon-tree- soil
Reminds me of nothing more than the toil, toil, toil
Of life in Al-Andalus.
Priests chanting the rosary
Like it was El Maleh Rachamim
Or the Mourner's Kaddish
(which it probably was, if the priest
Was a Converso, who changed his religion
To save his life or, maybe, that of his children).
Thursday 25th May 2017 12:09 am
Once I knew you,
Red hair blowing free
Catholic and wild:
The young banshee.
A Jacobite, like me.
The moral guardians condemned us:
Said we were transgressors,
The breakers of the law.
So then we asked each other
What was life for?
It’s the wildness that’s within us!
Our spirits roaming free:
The accomplishment of nothing
That is you and me.
Friday 21st April 2017 10:12 pm
Charlie and I have walked our post-cancer walks
Down this narrow stretch of green in the city
For a full decade now. We’ve aged together
But not like malt, we’ve blended into each other,
Man and Dog. He recognizes the smells, me the sights,
And his life is shorter than mine. That afflicts me like
A sentence. Very few minutes pass
Without me thinking of that. He connects me to...
Friday 3rd March 2017 11:08 pm
We wake to the rumbling thunder of blood,
Pumping hearts, twisted hearts, this shadow and I
Squeeze into the thick silences of trees.
Now the dark lights of Christmastide afflict us
Twilight memories drift, flux and flicker
In this breeze of time.
Such pungent affirmations,
Slip so quickly into the generations of suffering:
Eyes lifted to a cross, a...
Friday 17th February 2017 9:41 pm
My love didn’t come from nowhere.
My father was a bastard, a sailor on the seas,
My mother just a peasant
Spent her life upon her knees.
The noblesse oblige:
The drinking and the drugs,
Was countered by Intelligence
And a tingling in the blood.
We were the late Romans
Much diminished and now, finally, gone.
For since the death-stroke of 1453,
When we he...
Sunday 12th February 2017 12:23 am
In Calvados you have your cross
And though you won, you most surely lost.
Your sacrifice, at twenty-four, to modern wit
Is nothing more than a crying bore.
Who now has read Alamein to Zem Zem
Your story of the war in the western desert?
For though you certainly knew how to kill
You knew the cost, for you had no draperies over your eyes.
No deception, no disguise.
Friday 13th January 2017 10:56 pm