Tag Archives: Existence

”The Sum”

“The Sum”


The sum of yeasts spell the dregs of moments in the mould;

Images to come, some of use, most are not, and so a breeze:
Gentleness recalls; the times are short; the fee,
What stands stolid in the stamen does not yet unfold.
At so great a price, nothing enters, nothing leaves this place; nothing’s free and yet there is no looting,  no Granny Weatherall
To fear that in the groaning, smoothly flowing
Movement, here to there, both fruit and flower never knowing
Unity of purpose, no consummation in the delicacy
of dwelling too long on what must be—A glory for the anther’s night—
auspicates in favour of shadows of their mutual fate
While lighted paths from here to there spins restive, wearied states
In hours―minutes and seconds, really―and the weighty knowledge
that what augurs in the grace of beauty comes too late,
“. . .And I’ll be going, now!” The pistil whispers thus. “I am too late!”
The stigma augments as the fruit becomes too ripe,
and aspirations of eternity expose greater flaws
In auroras and rainbows as substances within themselves
one and all abandon fleeting glory in the name of natural laws.

—Once

Let us go then, you and I,
When the evening is spread out against the sky
Like a patient etherised upon a table;
Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets,
The muttering retreats
Of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels
And sawdust restaurants with oyster-shells:
Streets that follow like a tedious argument
Of insidious intent To lead you to an overwhelming question …

Oh, do not ask, “What is it?” Let us go and make our visit.
In the room the women come and go Talking of Michelangelo..”

The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock
T.S. Eliot
[1888-1965]

“There’ll Be No Holding Back”

deep-colours

“There’ll Be No Holding Back”

There’ll be no holding back this gathering time of year.
We both know what’s behind these growing shadows
In hearts, the slight miscalculations at the window’s
Sash. Seedless middlings grow daily here
And with them come a hint of plenty’s fears,
A portion’s curse, the grayest riches’ fallow
Grounds withheld from sight; silt in shallow
Memories of polliwogs and fry and not a single tear
For losses deadly as frozen promises now as both egg and spore
Abundant in the chaos speak well enough of pernicious peace
And what the seasons’ greeting means. We behold
The evidence of what’s to come so blindly gripped within its cold
And unborn fingers smothering the future in random disparate chords
Of dissonance and denial calibrated not to inspire progress but to please.

“The Phrase”

Hazel Reeves3

 

“The Phrase”

The phrase transcends the pen withdrawn
And so, too, the movement in and of itself.
The notebook’s filled, volumes line the shelf
And there upon a winter’s night, the low straw
Wins and he reviews the lot and finds the flaw
In each. Perhaps a word crossed out, a gulf
In time allows a light to objectivity less the self.
And when the wheel stops, the law
Of averages condemns the thing to sit there
Once again, forgotten, anonymous as a star
That far away, explodes with fireworks
That would consume a galaxy—matter gone berserk—
Ignite and what had no energies now amassed, a pregnant flare
Until at last, one starry night, a whisper reaches earthly ears.
Just so, the incomplete, the Word to words and back again
Traverse the gap as the task of phonemes
Aspires to ascend to higher stations, morphemes
Honoured in this natal happy path. Observe:
Throughout the zodiac of conscious meaning
Stars that matter to velocities in galaxies
Reborn inspire genitive ignition in the gravity
Of natural wisdom’s past and present leaning
To fruition in what was always meant to be.
The moon, in its phase; the sun, its angry season,
The poet writes within a pendulum of forces, reason
Bound, but nonetheless eternal mysteries
Revealed as the Ancient of Days calls behind the present hour
Words from phrases only time, distance and the pen can devour.
As the audience is eternal, so, too, what will compel
The heart and mind to ideal calligraphy; the wordsmith’s nod
Secure. And as “the source of all learning is the knowledge of God,”*
So, too, the gravitas of the nib cannot be silenced, nor the muse expelled.

Hazel Reeves2

*Bahá’u’lláh, “Words of Wisdom”, Tablets of Bahá’u’lláh

…pieces of scupture by Hazel Reeves...

“But at the Centre”

2-face-golden-mask

“But at the Centre”

But at the centre, in the middle, somewhere near
The eye, a briefer moment’s respite as well—yes, in sleep
You see a reticence, a full judicious leap,
Perhaps an extra lap between the truth in me and fear
In the new year, that wanderer along the narrow streets
Of cities where I am; albeit truth is here, there is no storm
Since nothing earthbound moves where angels swarm.
Where I am neither earth nor heaven retreat.
The man is circumcised; search the eyes,
What flies, what armies do you see?
Search the skies for what it means to be
Or not to be and there’s the torch raised high above the lies
Of heart and mind. From one or from the other, in solitude no one clearly sees
But eight seconds’ distance from the sun, and slightly less from me.

particles

“Allegories”

Allegory

“Allegories”

Allegories of the people ordain mere distractions and survive
The shared and ampler avalanche. Zeitgeists in the light of compromise
Through ages bleed to epochs and thicken in the rhyme
And cadence of the bounder; all is measured, finding strength in ties
Of mutual conceits and sentiments patterned and designed
To clear the balance sheets, embellish columns in the ledger
Bound in leather while practitioners mumble golden mantras: “Together
We’ll survive; our blood is blue and bonded, resigned
To fire as might—our gods continue to survive!” Just so, perhaps.
Substances that people traffic through the veins
Are indeed both grief and loss to happenstance that reigns
Reliquaries of the shaman
drain the humble shepherd’s cup of sap—
The blood of lightless suns—and fill the same from acrid rains.
Imagine, then, a people petrified in joy and wholly sheltered from pain.

…painting by Stephen W. Douglas…

“What Is Even More Sinister”

stare

“What Is Even More Sinister”

What is even more sinister
is a certainty, a pensive sense of foreboding
in dealings with the others
in person,

point blank, face to face;
shades who address
everything and everyone in two dimensions
as if they never leave their living rooms reviewing
what they think they see

on one of several pods or receivers
with or without screens,
with or without speakers,
with or without this firewall or that font

and that I can be deleted
as easily as noticed
in an instant, not even a moment’s hesitation.
Default comes to mind where love should be.

If not or should I insist on being addressed, despised,
I am entertained as a possible virus
or some kind of Trojan that needs watching
if only for that reason and no other.

“The Finite Question”

the-finite-universe-richard-ortolano

“The Finite Question”

The finite question—Thank you very much!
Will do me fine, my friend, nothing more’s
To grasp; not “Why?” but jewels of “Who?” or “What?” The core’s
Chorus at my reach within a lifetime. Touch
A heart within my passion’s fields and ask me “When?”
Or “Where?” or even “How?” and I am whole
No more than any man must be, for when I troll
The deeps for useful answers to finite human ends,
I come equipped as any in the crowd
Because I walk the earth, and from the mind
And human blindness come all answers to the blind,
…And be assured we are all blind. The infinite, the “Why?”a loud
And brash defiance in defense within the foam, “I am no fool,
No prophet! I speak nothing from divinity,
but from a simple earthly rule.”

“Supplications Grow”

SPARKS

“Supplications Grow”

Supplications grow, pleased to egregious in the melée of nations―
Legions speaking―but what’s not said conspires as spectres
Of the watchmen. Some several dusty hectares
In Írán, perhaps, or even more in Korea raise expectations
Of the many-eyed ones pacing jetsam judiciously
Across the night sky as swarms of fireflies, particles of clay
That mean so much to those who pay
To know what’s not been said. Salaciously,
They grope and probe through Gaia’s private parts
In diurnal fascination to record in meticulous scales, not heights
But depths in detail and adjunct logarithms here below. Sites
Of Hell are open secrets in denial while the nocturnal
Heavens mark the edges of desire’s will in oblivion
and in the cosmic dark
Do fools require suns when all that’s needed
is a single spark?

“Someone Questions”

deep-colours-14s

“Someone Questions”

…a question of mood and atmosphere…

Someone questions; in the soul who asks,
A sense of limitless flight, as in a light cast against
A cosmic scrim, a naked form made indisposed, concupiscence
So well hedged in that even snakes and asps
Imagine kingdoms, place and calling. One seeks
Solace in the stars drawn loosely in the dawn in meadows where the lark
And scissortail fly with grace and prudence safe within the dark
And moonlit bosom of the ether side of night. These may speak
In early evening mists as harbingers of loss or sparks, a dawn’s execution’s stay
For both are lost at first appearances of the other’s prescient rites.
Someone’s asking too many questions, standing, stupid in astonishment―slights
To similitudes, approbation of the moon in the cold blue light of day―
And while away their twilight hours in repetitious casting of the bones and runes,
Hers the scarlet crystals, his the blue.

“The Feet”

Escalator2

“The Feet”

The feet commend the escalators, wise,
Perhaps, yes. No hurry here.
So many trains, so many things to fear
And nothing moves but lies and alibis
In search of something less than action
More than brief delight, a slight distraction
In a brief but numbing journey from less to satisfaction.
Cables flash, that sudden lurch, light abstraction
Sends them tumbling yet they stand their posts
And are not moved unless it be some final
Transfer from incarnation through the wall; a spinal
Tap away in increments, epiphanies in search of hosts
Who until now have given less than ought
To how they lived or what their sanity has cost.

Escalator1