Tuesday, April 21, 2009

St Davids

If like some nutter combing coast, I searched
for Stuff we'd left behind along the shore
and gathered it all up into a poem
for some other nutter to find once more

The poem might look like this: four teabags
and tin foil nicked from shelves, a pack
of CDs wedged with salty towels, one Crazy,
a heap of shells, some wood, a ruddy rack

of words that try too hard to re-
create creation, attempting to retain
moments like butterflies, whose beauty lies
in fleetingness: the transience of passing rain;

your brown eyes; iris-sparks bursting from the soil;
your hand in mine: moments that words would only spoil.

Monday, April 13, 2009

the bath cycle II

He sinks skyward, and by the sudden cold all over he knows he’s reached the clouds. He ran this bath to escape the hot brown earth, the dusty summer sun, the heat, and when he lowers himself into the bath it feels like he’s risen above this world, weightless in the water, soothed and refreshed by this cold climate, this thick new cloud-element for him to exist in. The sky, the sky: blue sometimes, gray others, polluted always. Shuddering he thinks of the sun: a blazing foghorn torch in this cityscape, just strong enough to push through the crowd of fuggy fumes, determined to drench the ground in its life-force. Climate change feels like it’s coming on fast. The paranoia’s struck, and every time he pounds the pavement he feels like pollution’s parading toxic in his lungs. Cars, fumes, flames: he fears them all, not only because of their macho machinistic power, their capability to crush human bodies into nothingness, but because of their environmental impact. He fears not the here and now, but the future, and if WallE has taught him anything, it is that eco-disaster is not so far away. He seldom goes out these days, and when he does he drops his hands in his pockets and tries to breathe in as little as possible. The bath seemed his only escape, the pure cold hope of the water rising around him, cleansing him of the fumes and the flames that he so feared.


Saturday, April 11, 2009

the bath cycle I

Skin submerged, heavier than milk. The womb of water’s supplied by two metal taps at the top, dispensing liquid that’s clearer than memory even. The poet, immersed in words all day, finally sinks herself into the liquid substance, reveling in the sheer physicality of it. Not words, but water – though she can’t escape language, even lying here in this languid state. Alliteration at its worst, a rift of rhymes drifts over her with the song-steam from the bath. Kids in the street drinking wine on the sidewalk, saving the plans that we make till it’s night time… it’s cliché but effective, a lyric that tugs along a kite of memories, swaying in the wind like she swayed in that club, the wine-mouths on the pavement, her friends leaving her on the desert streets…too much, too much. She blinks it back, and her eyelids are like the thin skin atop boiled milk, barely a defence against the rising steam of the bath, essence of the past. Her body swirls, she hesitates as she pulls herself pulsating from the womb of memories, the water womb, emerges triumphant from the sour sticky liquid that is Radox bubble bath and soothes herself back into her clothes, to her conscious self. Behind her, the water absorbs the imprint of her body and her dream-state is left to darken and brew in the bath like a warning. A sitting storm.