The Temple

One day all this will end,
Futile as the Sea to consider
Existence when the
Weeds reclaim the roads,
And far offshore offload
Post-coastline,
Fossils of litter
And a piece that once glittered
On the most beautiful chest
And wrest from the wrist
In swells and scallops
Of circadian
Harmonies.
The Sea then, endures,
Whole cities gone,
And even the parables
And phrases
Of sacred texts became
Little more than plankton
In the bellies
Of mammals with gills
And dreams about fish,
And ancient revenge
By growing two legs,
Just as ours were then, upright,
Two feet, unhindered by water
And waves thirty years
In their making and
As steep as Athena’s temples
And her garlanded head.
Irreparable trust,
Covenants rust
On the Sea bed
With traffic lights
Stuck on red,
And where once there were highways,
Rivers instead,
And then, a watershed.

And yet I would sacrifice
And trade
Ten oceanic years,
Arduous, longer
Than man-made metrics
Of time and place
And longer again,
For a day in the shade
Of my one beloved,
My one true friend.

Yttrium

You are my alpha thought and omega,
Calcium for my teeth and protein
Ever-present; you give me a range
Of autumnal rainbows crystallised
In feathery-eyes of a peacock,
(You were always so kind
To ignore my bad luck),
And then elemental energies
The Goddess of Love strove and mined
From underneath strands of yttrium
And promethium, from which the wish
To brush your hair was born,
And also the surf and shores of my poetry,
A perspective on my entreaties,
Crystalline quicksilver enchantress.

It is difficult for me to always talk so fondly;
My shell is broken, its browns and blacks
Like small tectonic jigsaw pieces scattered
As if brittle tessaras of scintillas on the lips
Of the bottom of the ocean.

For I am merely a mollusc in the mouths
Of old aggressive seagulls.
Raucous zealots! Pamphleteers
On roaring rolling coastal skies,
I am left up high with your touch
For just one moment,
Until dropped, my fleshy self gone,
A shell to join my dead brothers
For however long it takes
The fragile to be glued together,
Pierced with a pin, and put away
In the obscure drawers of a curator
Who was the last museum owner
To catalogue the vast extent
Of myths and wishes and sins.

L’eternità è intatta

Rain doesn’t stream
Asunder the sea,
Nor be in hurries
Today for my needs.

I’ve seen through storm-troubles
For years less remembered;
By its own great weight
A sea- bed is tempered.

Ashamed of existing,
More waters have laws
Than my calcified heart.
Il mio calore è per l’inverno, sempre;
L’eternità è intatta come l’arte.

The bones of an ocean’s regrets;
Troubles redoubled
Do not go away,
When years are persisting
And the sea is still grey.

Ode To A Parking Lot, No.2

Grief, do not disparage me,
Do not diminish my yearning
To observe the rites I will learn
In turn, by rote, just as oceans
Spurn the lode in mackerel bones
And whiting dreams and cod,
Fulfilling the needs in fishermen’s
Ganseys and hand-made
Tablecloths their wives
Once ironed, having washed,
On kitchen benches draped across,
Though sometimes a trawler
Or two were lost and the sea,
With blind unfeeling disbelieving
Reasons breeding in their peaks
And troughs, duplicitous sea,
Brought home only grief and loss,
Those I have known and those
I have not, as I cried on my own
At midnight in a parking lot.

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.

The Coast Of Shrouds

I prefer heavy rain
As rain keeps me grounded;
A shipwreck submerged,
A ghost keeps its counsel.
Crowds too kept at bay,
A drowning skiff is confounded.

I lost all I loved back then,
And all I would love forever,
Is it surprising to know
I could not imagine life
And thoughts within it.
Thoughts like skittish clouds
On the coast of shrouds
As unseen suns diminish.

An Unrestarted Heart

This road is the road of my death.
I stood motionless in its lucid waters
Where parallel to the ocean

I speared a neon fish.
He admonished me with a fossilising
Shock of ages, waged in his eyes

Which were tiny, glaucous opals.
He once danced and shone
In shoals unknowable as stars.

I am opposed to my own taxidermy.
Standing in the sea leaves me thirsty.
The sky is perforated by jars

For storing a catch which is ours.
Lobsters, swordfish, octopus hearts,
Once the muscle is stopped

It’s almost impossible to restart.
I witnessed it only once, as a boy,
And mythology claimed it for herself.

How far we had journeyed.
I envisioned my existence
With gulls and oppressive seasalt air

Which stripped the elders of teeth
And their ability to remain human,
Their silence as fragile as chalk,

And it corroded all moments
And customs, the colours of
Spring summoned in my lover’s hair,

The jigs of tradition around
A pole each townsmen bore
To the beach with such gravitas

Commensurate only to their souls;
The saline air froze time,
Woven into their hair, banded

Together like a comet’s tail,
Like the spawn of the golden eels
Which are reeled in by fishermen

With the sun tattooed into
Their ganseys. I too will be spry
And fry, live and die,

There is nothing starker.
For now, I arrive and I cry
Behind my steering wheel,

A harpoon through my hope,
Ego skewered by a dart
Outside an unlit supermarket.

The Ironies

Bitter the ironies,
Fuel of my life,
Devourer of time,
A grave for a wife.

Seeds in an apple
Letting trolls down,
I remembered you wearing
Your basque wedding gown.

All memories sealed
In a chest they had drowned,
Deep in sharp oceans,
A long-submerged town;

You can still see some rooftops
When you dive further down;
There’s the church belfry,
Brass bells make no sound.

I cannot choose living
With this charged weighted load,
For as soon as it’s given
I must cross their toll road

To pay with the striking,
The force and the blow,
So I hope you’ll forgive me
If I remain here below.