Soul Coast

My feet are a foreign land
As I stand where surf relapses,
Whitecaps are my family
And encapsulate with great
Succinctness
And sadness

My lifetime of experiences,
An escapologist, an emphasis,
My bare toes in saline curls,
Where is my soul’s house
In this here and now?
I too loved the feet of her odes,

As measured as moonlight
With feminine verbs,
I caught a punctured headlamp
From a lane that would curve
And chicane until it meets
A coastal kerb, above

The haunting cove,
And I am compelled,
Once again, to restart,
To daylight’s return.
On periwinkle sands,
A mustard-coloured heart.

Temple Bar

Your love is my temple
Where we enter
In reverential
Silence.
These tasselled
Tabernacles
Inside you
Are draped
With silks and refined
Ores from the shores
Of the Aral Sea,
Luminescent shells
And gold-leaf murals
Of peacocks and grapes.
This temple, (just like that arid bed
Once home to sea-cucumbers
And one exotic fungus which
Expunged all poverty,
Caused wars born from
Tribal animosities),
Flooded once, yet while all
Around the shops and houses
Resounded with torrential
Waters and furniture pounded,
(They were engulfed by the love
Of the Lord all around them,
Inundated beyond survival),
Yet you stood firm,
Outlasted all the others.
Your love is the beginning,
An entrance, the frame
In which my adoring form
Is made out of shadows.

We are a communion
Our love out of your love
Conducted by a lightning rod
Until earthed in a channel.

I must be mistaken
If the worth of sleep is awaking.
A telephone rings briskly
Somewhere in brittle distances.
I get dressed and feign existence
In the inbetween life
And all its anodyne mechanics;
I go to work solely so that
I can live and pray again
In those shadows.

Kush

I rode through the snows
Of your Hindu Kush,
I walked through galaxies
Of entropic daytime-dust
Some hundred-soul kilometres
North from Rawalpindi
And the lemon-lush yards
Of green Abbottabad.

Returning to foul play,
All the way from Asia into
A Nottinghamshire ginnel,
Far, far away from palsied peaks
Of syncretic embezzled goddesses.
There is a certain ability
Of the English suburban
Populous, to keep a garden
Tidily, and a house
That I cannot share
Should I dare to return
To that sandy airstrip of grit.

In a dream within a dream
She passes for me
Daisies through our fence,
Although there is no recompense
For what I have seen
Between a sunny meridian
And that mountainous defence.

Time Is A Spiral

Time is a spiral,
Double-dead helix,
God’s corkscrew,
Glass ceiling,
Ponzi scheme love.

I do not believe
These seasons are even.
In speeds now descending,
Some skelters
For mending
And sometimes a swamp.

So I am still wary
When a universe pops!
For gods love the bubbles,
And therein my trouble
As life gently floats off.

Song Of The Lone Nomad

He steered into town
From the Elephant Road –
Historical misnomer;
For the locals don’t know
Where ivories go

So kept the tusk-gates open.
He peered from his howdah
With a bowlful of chowder
Atop a crowning dust-cloud;
And vials of musth

Faked from the husk
Of Arctic walrus,
Narwhal or seal.
Opulent earring,
Summer sun searing,

The townsfolk gathered
In wonder and thrall.
His name did not matter
And nor did his platter
Bestowing cassowary galls.

He talked of cladistics,
Gujarati mystics
Seven-feet tall,
Harmonious yoga,
Callisthenics diploma

He kept in a scroll.
Sirenian slaves
And a third murdered charmer,
He talked of mermaids
Braiding a harbour,

Catastrophes, yes,
And distant disasters.
Just as curious as his arrival,
Hostage to his survival,
He departed on plumes of fern,

Turning dirt to marble,
When the district police descended
There was no apprehending,
He crossed alive into Nepal
And left the dead to marvel.

The Withering Tree

The leaves upon the withering tree,
What’s good for him is not for me;
Mid-March grey, by May green,

Where he went cannot be seen;
Do dreams prolong without him?
Those stowed within his mind, it seems,
Harboured for my doubting.

Changed my clothes, change of scene,
Their remedies, a routing;
Bury me under a withering tree,
Atop the Oxen Mountain.

The Drop

Familial disasters
Bore disasters in me;
I am a master of nothing,
Not even Serendipity.

If only I could have such feelings,
My soul made for annealing,
But I am not for kneeling
And that is all there is.

Be wary of the door you choose,
For one is black
And one is blue;
Deeper than the lake
A bruise,
Deeper than the mines
A truth,
Where the Lady is buried
In an old borrowed tune.

Virgola Pergola

Virgola, questa è la mia ode a te,
Ladro di spazio e tempo
Annidato tra costrutti più solidi,
Gambe di lettere e pilastri
Di parole e cuneiformi
Che senza di te
Suonerebbe assurdo.
Una goccia di inchiostro, una macchia,
Inalando prima del preferito
Riverberi di avverbi
Che non può essere differito
E non sarà contestato;
A volte rosso come il petto
Del pettirosso nella boscaglia,
Chi, dice la leggenda
Ha ottenuto tinture nel petto
Dal bagno nelle acque insanguinate
Del nostro Signore crocifisso.

Disembarked

Throughout it all
We lived and died,
And now we’re here
We have survived.
Whatever happened
For all time?

The endless wave is still but one,
The time we gave
Forgotten songs;
I’ll never be so woebegone
As those days dried
In solitary confinement,
As a soul disembarked
Bound and dumbfounded
In the moors of my lungs.

Outside a ragtag raucousness
Of seagulls
Signalling new reasons,
How I rode on the back
Of an alligator’s crest
With ivory hands
And gloves of ivy,
How I rode on the back
Of a humble turtle,
Nothing then deemed
Insurmountable hurdles
As the turf reforming before me
When I ruminate
On now, and then.

After All

Under margrave groves
Of peach blossom trees
There flows the falls
Of a winding creek,

Their blossoms’ aromas
Are mild and are meek,
But those torrents below
Are baleful and bleak.

My iris-blown beard
Diurnal and straw,
But under my chin
Eternal tears pool.

Snowfall cloaking
After all,
But when the snow melts
(If not long before),

Those bodies revealed,
Their mortal hands hold
The one different future,
Distant and cold.