Symptomatic

Is this world both one and true
As that within my mind,
From Argonauts, Thelassian crew,
A golden fleece to find.

I felt the sea the same,
That gentle Aegean lapping;
Did Peloponnesian navies tame
The inlets I am mapping.

Or is this landscape’s manifest
From minds divested only;
Symptomatic, I am a guest,
Devoid of fleet and lonely.

Don’t pity me, a juvenile,
These sands and weeds aren’t homely.
Owned by ones I could not find,
Wandering lost and lonely.

Tristessa

Strong hearts
Do not require taming,
Unmetallurgic wild horses
Never found comfort
In sodden-straw stables.
Your father brought home
For the old kitchen table
A brace of dead pheasants
Bound by a cable.

Through turbulent moors
And rubicon rivers
We felt there reverting
A timeless deep raging;
From scorched summers burning,
Briar-berry and bramble,
To winter’s bare pantry
Where salt pays for aging.

Together, five or six moments,
We felt more or less able
In the heartbeat of angels
To outlive the lengthy assailing,
(Daily they’re planted,
We later discovered)
Of all modern things
People now take for granted.

No one here has ever seen
Our grey-green seas
Deprived of life and motion,
The fossils would make a commotion!
No one observed those orchard trees
In the entirety of their devotion
To imparting the knowledge of apples,
And no one here speaks,
For our mouths do not open
(Unless for a token),
So I remain unable to say
How much one singular moment takes,
Though without you here
This feels like forever and its days,
Restrained by constant motion.

Ancorato

Il mare mi ha interiorizzato;
Proprio come pensavo di essere stato rimosso
Ho ingoiato la sua ubiquità blu.

Questa tristezza incorruttibile,
Anti-materia, causa di elettricità statica,
La mia antitesi innaturale completata,

Lanciò la sua spessa corda dal ponte
E si è ancorata a me.
Mi trovavo su una banchina grigia

E anche se le persone passavano
Tutto quello che potevano vedere era ancora un uomo di riserva,
Prima che si rivolgessero ai caffè.

Tutti i molluschi sono silenziosi
Quando uno scrittore non può guardare i suoi strumenti
Non può guardare alla sua vita abbondante.

A Statistician’s Dream

I dreamt about you last night.
I made a joke to see you smile,
Because it is your smile
And a thousand other views of you
Which captivate, satisfy and beguile
Well-trained professorial thoughts.
I said, I am a statistical outlier,
I tend to sleep on the floor.

Then, I awoke on my own once more.
Why is it any surprise that all I loved Would someday abscond or die,
The daily abhorred, for I have a curse
In my arm or the knot of my knees
And I cannot drain the source.
So I dream of you instead,
And let life run its course.

Alicia Also

Twenty years slipped
Since I last stretched
These pavements,
Hairs are the same
With less width
In the aching.
Four families moved
Through a house over there,
Its neatly squared garden
Where a fair woman fainted
And needed a sutre;
She relocated to Lincoln
And give birth to the ancient
Ways of the future.

The ghost house is there
On Precariousness Corner,
Windows all boarded,
Hoardings corroded,
The grass as grown over
As dreams of the homeless.
The children are children
Of those I grew up with,
But a good local ghost story
Is peerless and opened.
Schools expanded,
Red squirrels survived,
Ethnographic adoptions
But pine trees are always
The same and how they thrive.
The old lady who played an oboe
All through one winter
Is buried in our municipal way
Over the river, yet the oboe
Still has tunes to deliver.
Branches quivering in the breeze
Have unseen opposable fingertips
On musicians six feet deep.

Everyone here has new extensions,
Smartly paved driveways
And alfresco dimensions
In wicker and rattan;
The future transfused,
Indifferent, oblivious,
Anxieties gifted and brewed
As traits for the atheists
Whose numbers are swelling,
And bruised the religious
Whose numbers are telling.
Everyone has a disease we
Cannot see, which is that
Everyone steadfastly
Refuses to talk
To each other.

And there is the window
Where every weekend I’d rush
To see my neighbour Alicia,
Schoolboy crush,
Heartbeat in crisis,
Sufficient hormones to fill
The silver Cup of Dionysus;
Alicia also relocated,
This time to Bristol
Or Bournemouth or Weymouth,
And so I never took that one chance
To say something teenage and
Wishful. Alicia got married
And her children are older
Than I was back then,
Shy and less bold,
More innocent, yes.

Tuesdays, you can still inhale
The scent of soup drifting
From the east side factory,
Tomato or beef or oxtail tides;
Thursdays, winds change
And fish trawler residues blow
Over the town far and wide.
We drove there once to lay flowers
Where a nameless prostitute died.

All fixtures and fittings remain
Of memories kept for twenty years
Inside my mind’s shallow grave,
Yet while the world flew through
The universe delightful and bright,
I was left here, two decades behind.

Ansonia’s Song

Are these matters
Commensurate, I really have
Little or frequently no idea.

All I know is relative
Within my idealistic heart,
This desire, wanting you near,

Like a pendulum pulling on
The weights of my attention,
Harmonic oscillations,

I stand in the hallway of my life,
Dust appears in shafts on light
Through a stained glass window

Above a blue door I cannot open,
Doomed to stay motionless
Until I am used for new fires.

Hair’s Breadth

The evil that people did,
And evil that people still do
Is reason enough why I’ll be returning
In a soul-equipped igloo.

On the backs of whales I’ll hunt
For injustices in the thaw,
My harpoon deeply impaling
The abandonment of law.

I’ll sail across death’s forests,
Hear humpback’s distressed call,
By their skyward fire at night alone,
Warming my hands as I fall.

The moment is my throne allayed
Beyond that icy floe,
Eternity, hair’s breadth away,
Watch me as I go.