Fear in a handful of dust


Words cannot echo mood swings
It’s impossible to convey
The tingling numbnesses
Of grief on this ordinary day.

The semi-detached daze
Of depression;
The tight closing-in upon oneself
That foreshadows pent up tears.
The fear that accompanies the aloneness
In everything I do,

Mood meanders like an Ox-bow lake,
And can take years to gather to a flood-tide
To knock me off my feet
& gather to a greatness like the ooze of oil*
Life is composed of all the threads
of uncompleted hesitations,
Decisions and revisions,
transpose themselves
into the passing consolations,
that always leave me in this bloody mess
Of sense impressions.
Each contradictory set
Of firings in the brain
Sets me on this rocky road
Black dogs swarm iinto my brain
like stinging bees in summer rain.

* from God's Grandeur  Gerard Manley Hopkins SJ

The world is charged with the grandeur of God.
It will flame out, like shining from shook foil;
It gathers to a greatness, like the ooze of oil
Crushed. Why do men then now not reck his rod?
Generations have trod, have trod, have trod
 And all is seared with trade; bleared, smeared with toil;
And wears man's smudge and shares man's smell: the soil
Is bare now, nor can foot feel, being shod.



◄ Rosemarie

Metamorphosis ►


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Stephen Gospage

Sat 2nd Jul 2022 17:36

I can only echo other comments, John. This is special.

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Carol Congalton

Sat 2nd Jul 2022 00:38

'Decisions and revisions,
transpose themselves
into the passing consolations,
that always leave me in this bloody mess'

Truthfully expressed and scribed! 👍

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Rose Casserley

Fri 1st Jul 2022 21:08

A veritable masterpiece John. Very well done sir!

RC 💋

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Stephen Atkinson

Fri 1st Jul 2022 18:07

Holden has said it all, John 🌈

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John Marks

Fri 1st Jul 2022 18:03

Thank you Rose. Stephen & Holden for your generous words.

I have let things slip, a thirty-year-old cargo boat
stubbornly hanging on to my name and address.
They have swabbed me clear of my loving associations.
Scared and bare on the green plastic-pillowed trolley
I watched my teaset, my bureaus of linen, my books
Sink out of sight, and the water went over my head.

Sylvia Plath, Tulips

Holden Moncrieff

Fri 1st Jul 2022 17:06

An incredible poem, John, your words convey pain in such a truthful, profound way that really resonates! 🌷

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