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16 July 2012

Bastille Day


writing in two columns not
the tiny words of the Brontës not the slanting
desk of Austen not
the dance of ink that
Plath seemed to do
not the lists and
hand drawn maps of
Orwell not a dead
brothers notebook
where is my voice when
I stare at these
margins in dark
light which river
should I cross these
words with who’s
shore do I heap them on
the cobblestone
is pregnant outside
her home like some
kind of apparition

a living house a dead
house we looked for ghosts
for her
ghost and found a
wild garden no
not even that
someone else's home
that we were staring at
motion
time
discovering words already
dead when I read them
what is this landscape
pits rivers
railways rocks
the wildness of urbanity
these streets
don’t feel like mine
they are everybody
else’s I shall adore
every footstep
each is holy
even I
am holy 

this ten tonne
tongue hot slag
a harmonica that
beats the vivid pulse
the howl of a train
whistle
this swarm of text
gathered 
conned into
being between these
library walls
history or something
similarly magnetic
what is history anyway
all these twisting
contexts licked clean
with academic prowess
using words in a way
I can’t quite reach
just my fingertips

not my fat hands
that want to
squeeze and pry
and pinch
green and brown
time and moss Blake’s grave
I place my penny
except its 2p
disturbing the
symmetry of strangers
a thankfulness that
the rain understands
but not the screaming
german child climbing
in the tree beside me or
the squirrel in the bin
rooting through our lazy
detritus
the more facets I inspect
and magnify explore

the more
I see everyone not
just my chosen heroes
but those who’ve hurt me 
used me tore me
broke me so many versions
of myself
sketches
written right to left
counterbalance
like the thick cement bricks on the crane
standing like an awkward
insect in a building site
all floors no walls
grey and slow
revealing
a building born
naked
our interiors
filling filling filling
time a small girl
these streets are every
metaphor 
night a simile
when none is needed

we are transient as
stone suddenly still
I am a burial
ground
pennies in a line blue plaque
suicide scream
I am none of your words
and none of mine
I twisted and
glistened at your
pages kissing the
glass between the walls
the doors
these matrixes are mouths
dripping down an escalator into the
moving margins of
trains
this city starts to come
alive in my mind

it’s callouses and curves
let’s count the mortgages
the yoga mats the
bikram yoga bitches
and their almost
debt free lives polarity
is a plum in my mouth
its not that their
different but that
were almost the
same these degrees
of difference only
degrees
hidden gardens
we smelled (you smelled)
that honeysuckle 
on my tiptoes to see
the yellow breath of
it’s shape
we are constant
in motion
thought
always weaving
weaving weaving

a door
that shouldn’t be in
front of me Sylvia
yours
death is mainstream
it’s a big river
one you nor I can
navigate
sky captain
earth captain
anchors tattooed in
our skin
I find my flaws 
close enough to reach them
pass a paper finger over
their berth
lost a little in this
world of dead poets
other realness in the fields
waiting like hay bales
heavy and collected

5 comments:

Judge Whisky said...

This is the best piece of writing I've read this year, possibly in my lifetime.
You stand tall beside Plath and Austen.
I'm honoured to call you friend.

omiT said...

Incredible. The voicing is so precise.

Brian Miller said...

dang cat...this is strong in imagery and its barbs as well...what is history anyway
all these twisting
contexts licked clean
with academic prowess
using words in a way
I can’t quite reach
just my fingertips
...truth....love the strength in your voice....

welshstream said...

That is an amazing piece of writing ... so many evocative lines ... love 'the wildness of urbanity/these streets/don’t feel like mine/they are everybody/else’s I shall adore
every footstep/each is holy/even I/am holy' ...one that will give much through re-reading several times. Thankyou

Natasha Head said...

Fantastic! Love the word waltz thru the "pro's" the power of the author's voice...what a way to kick-off OpenLinkNight! Thank you!