Paradise Returned

Early world-day January sun gently

Tears away low scraps of frosty fog ribbons

Washes its delightful warmth and

Fresh-as-Eden light against the

Eastern sides of garden silver birches,

Makes jewels of drips at the purple twig tips;

Feeling is tranquil, though there is work to be done.

A patient, forgiving god is near.

A Dark Grail

Playful, wilfully strong winds

That recently raked the long-dead, cold ash seas

Of January’s long-dark moon of passion

Snap open, draw out a banner I

Have only seen in dreamscapes:

A dark grail framed by shooting stars;

Now lift a jackdaw effortlessly

And fling it across the arcs

Of playground world and

New-opened, wide blue envelope.

There’s a harsh, savage-code joy scream

Torn from the bird’s bandit throat;

“You ain’t going to be born again,

Turn away from your second-chances illusion

And be all of the selves you need to be

Before your bright rainbow burns only

Slow, old gold-treasure memories.

Find the garden in the desert,

The music in the river,

The time beyond the clock.”

 

The Brightest Apes

January is a time-torn storm,
Roaring vortex doorway of the year;
Watch-storm wizard,
Wind-both-ways blizzard.
The past is new,
The future a fossil;
Flakes of white are
Memories gone and
Those not yet lived.

We stand on the threshold,
Smug, for after all,
We are the brightest apes.
We stamp-dance, fret or weep
Like small children,
Powerless, startled and chilled;
A little a-feared,
Over-faced, overawed and overwhelmed:
The brightest apes,
the most intelligent fools.

25/1/2013