Fall (II)

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Another quick little example from the verse novel draft that I’m getting close to finishing up. Enjoy!

I see you now, crouched beside her in the sand,
explaining the slow cosmology of endings,
as she, my only light,
plucks from flotsam at the waterline
a starfish, carried in by night, discarded by the sky,
cast to sea and washed ashore as common as the tide

Perhaps, this ceaseless grey,
this rising, ashen quiet
is the coming of an end to things,
and we, the orphaned notes of a song now fading out,

If so, then perhaps a pact between
the water and the shore could yet be made,
brokered by this light that sings between us,
the ocean of you, calling all my bones,
now casting up a starfish,
as an echo of a sky
that birthed such a light as this,
a light that lashes me to shore,
that stills and sures the ache of me
when all reason says to turn to sea
and go.

A verse novel update!

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Progress has slowed a little this month thanks to the holidays but here’s another little taste from a draft piece. The intent here is to capture a small town falling apart as the world does the same around it. As always, feedback is welcomed.

As things fell apart

some talked of going underground,
of burying themselves alive
in doomsday bunkers dug
beneath the red and waiting earth.

Some just walked off into landscape,
shouldering packs heavy as the sky,
to cabins and hunting shacks to wait for it,
whatever it would be, to come and to pass.

Some stood struck dumb and watched,
as the town turned to the gun,
trapped as static, lost in the loop,
moving only to keep in motion

while power shed all politeness, cast off
its clothes and stood, a rough beast naked,
hammer cocked, barrel smoking in the street
and declared its slouching self the law.

The light in his eyes discernible from here to high hold and I could have heard his screams from here to my farm.

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1.

Let it not be said that we didn’t see it coming,
or that we didn’t try.

Recall Shiva, ash smeared and towering death, 
conjured by fire in Alamogordo.
Recall physicists turned watchmakers,
guilt growing like a Hiroshima cancer.

Recall peace parks,
Sunday marches,
palm fronds,
banners, digital petitions,
the changing of a profile photo to a declarative sign.
Such conviction as a dove!

Recall how we, with such resolve, attempted salvage,
tried to pull the body from the wreck,
or if not, to perform our most honest sorrow as it burned.

2.

And the end, slow and tumorous,
will come not with a bang
nor however many billion whimpers either.

Will come with no screech of nails on glass,
no holy stone to swing at the skull,
no keening grief.

Will come not with eulogies
but a long and welcome quiet,
with none to mourn the passing,

of all this meat that learnt to speak.

Another taste of this ludicrous project…

You might remember I posted recently about a post apocalyptic verse novel I’m working on… If not… Well… I’m working on a post apocalyptic verse novel (and now you’re up to speed).

Anyways, thought I’d drop another drafty piece on this bloggy thing to give you lovely people another taste. As always, feedback is welcome!

These set aside things

How we, having then good reason
to look up, and speak smiling,
named each waking planet and star,
each spark, born again each night.

How your fingers would unfold
from fists into the blue light,
imagining if only they
would stretch a little higher,

they could pluck and hold
whole stars, whole engines
of hydrogen and fire
in your tiny palm.

How one night, I saw you reaching,
as Prometheus, thief of fire,
towards a waking Venus,
and saw jealous Zeus for what he was.

How I slept in splayed dreams
haunted by thump of eagle wings,
til you woke next morning singing
wonders to diamonds in the sky.

Now we, broke open and thin,
have set aside such things.
Now, under a sky thick
and malignant, our livers

turn to dust, and regrow daily
as ghosts. We, looping iterations of
long dead myth, are bone poems,
we are spoken-only selves.

These songs- fast fading echoes,
from when we sought out proof of gods
in the grey indifference
of distant spinning rocks.

Ludicrous project #2

So I’ve been toying for a couple of months with the kernel of a project… Basically a post apocalyptic verse novel… Yeah I know… WTF right?

I figure this will be a self published job if it gets anywhere. Either way, this will be my first foray into anything of any great length and that in itself is kinda exciting. So for those interested here’s a little taste…

‘a good place’

She is playing at the foot of the dunes,
filling her pockets with
handfuls of sand.
‘Dust,’ she says, for when
we want to fly
out
     and over the water,
to whatever waits
beyond the break.

At the water’s edge,
men begin to gather,
thousand yard staring
into the grey.

‘This would be a good place,’
she says.

A place to lay down and wait,

to turn to sand,
to shed our skin
and be pulled apart by crabs.

To offer ourselves up,
willing and humming,
as fresh hearts
to whatever gods are left.

Like anvils and axe heads

There are men now walking into the water
How thickly they come
How like tangled ribs they look

How heavy their coats must be
pockets full of fists
to weight them

Everything behind us
has turned to ash

The sky is slow falling grey

We sit like heavy stones
and dull eyed
from the dunes

we watch them

going under
coming up wet lungs and flailing
then going under again.

Notes from another apocalypse

Imagine the good fortune of the generation that gets to see the end of the world. This is as marvelous as being there at the beginning….. Jean Baudrillard

Exfoliating beads were turning up in all the major lakes;
islands of plastic, foam and bones
had formed like unwanted new limbs
around the pacific and you could almost see the air.

There was probably a war on somewhere-
there’s always a war.

Seals came ashore catatonic,
shucking their skin like bad dreams.
Polar bears found religion
and lit themselves alight for nature documentaries
as something ancient turned to vapour in Fukushima
and melted into a sea
reaching into dry places
hurling up waves like fuck you middle fingers.

A red flower bloomed across the digital pacific;
another map unfurled across a dead territory.

Fishermen saw signs of the apocalypse
in the keloidal skin of jellyfish that threw themselves
in wet desperation from the water
and some dolphins suicided.

Salarymen offered themselves up like fresh hearts
as holiday plans were made, remade and finally unmade.

We talked of throwing ourselves from cliffs
onto the rocks below but decided against it
on grounds that radical critique
had become self-negating
and we were more or less dead already anyway;
passion was for the young and their starry eyes-
only passionate because they were young
and had starry eyes.

I thought of us that way
-so full of light,
so full of new and fresh flight- and wondered
which gap we’d fallen through on landing
as we sat huddled like good ghosts,
locked away in doomsday bunkers,
curling our slow selves round tiny HD screens,
reading ghosts back into machines,
waiting for Revelation after the one Big Crunch,
waiting for the all the lights to finally go out
at once.