Friday, 2 February 2018

rip


mouth spitting out 
salty water
feet already beneath
the sand
lost dreams swept back and forth
never to settle never
to reform
unless mangroves bind them
bring them back to life
if deposited
still at the mercy of the wind
the waves
already clawing them back

waves push hard against the chest
if the undercurrent secret lover
of the moon finds the wind
and the time of day favourable
it has the power to haul the feet
out of the sand
drag the body away
ignores the hand that struggles to wave
quickly fills the throat to steal
the voice no
cries for help

another whole
broken down
 grit
and memory for those on the shore
stranded
their voices to record
the horror
though water and wind 
heed not







Language, our mangroves:

  
Open water lures, a web
not driven by hunger
nor the desire to breed,
it just is, a phenomenon —
but would it be if we
with our eyes did not to see,
with our ears did not to hear?

If we did not enter
by feet or ship,
by head or board,
and cross its distances
or ride its waves
because we can,
what then its appreciation?

What if our tales were not told,
no Moby, no Long John?

If the world had no consciousness,
no language to tell
what is seen or heard,
what then of water and sand?

Languages are the mangroves
that form new lands out of old.


Wednesday, 17 January 2018

12 apostles (latest edit):


Twelve in silence stand
eight under the sun
four in shadow.

Resolute, they look to the sea
no matter the time of day
the season at hand
the lunar or solar cycle
the stars that spin above.

Twelves sentinels to guard
eight under the sun
four in shadow.

Sand, stone, ragged grass and steadfast
silence within the relentless boom
defend the indefensible
against salt, wind and ocean.

They meet the sea,
whose waves crash like wild Picts
against Hadrian’s wall, foam tossed high
to sparkle before the fall, soundless
even as they grow incomplete.

Twelve apostles silent all day,
eight under the sun
four in shadow.

when I was a boy I stood upon one,
the arch to cross still existed then
and, in the wild wind and sea spray battle,
grasped that the world would always be
greater than reality.

Now sixty and only eight remain,
four have surrendered grain by grain
into the great journey of sea and sand
to find themselves never whole again
but particles of a new land
in a distant horizon
unnamed until mangroves seal the fragments into soil.

In memory twelve remain, silent, frozen
in a time before language and dance
when the world, lately formed,
hung itself out to dry
like the wings of a newly birthed dragonfly.

They guard still, the twelve;
eight under the sun
four in shadow.