Monday, 24 March 2008

Seeing Without Looking

No longer do I look at things,

My heart lives in the light;

I breathe inside the traces

Of self's long harried flight.

I am no longer only me,

If such a thing there ever was...

I was of less than nothing made,

An image of a cause.

Drefracted since the making of the world

In fallen sorrow is my joy

In paradox and irony,

Fragments freely bleeding,

So as not to be,

And yet to be still

And, through this,

Be free of things, in things,

And see

Monday, 17 March 2008

Punctuation

You will find me no longer
In the dots and dashes
Marking and separating
For there is no rigor here
Unless rigor mortis
Sets in
I am unpunctuated
Slippery and malleable
To the whim and spin
Like grains of sand
Give way
Under foundations
Shifting and flowing
A storm of confusion
Then gone
You will find the easy message here
You did not seek
But can digest
Never having to follow
The thought through
To its unpalatable end
Or take responsibility
For understanding
The message
That I am
The subtlety
The ambivalence
The mystery
The infinity
All in the boundaries
Now conveniently
Smoothly
Going stop

Mind Your Language

I am serious enough
To laugh all day long
And laugh not to cry.
I do not place my thoughts
In vacuum-packed words
Gift-wrapped,
But rather say what I mean.
I am like a woman
Who marries her rapist
So as to punish him
With her fidelity,
And let him punish her
With her own obstinacy,
Lest we lose the beat
For lack of beating.

In Transit

What is this place
Like all other places,
This place I cannot place –
The same steel and glass
And neon glow as any other place?
Only a fugitive, roguish smell
May here or there
Locate me somewhere real –
The fragrance of a local soil at sunset,
Or a certain blend of coffee,
Or faint wisps of outlawed tobacco
From invisible pariah smokers,
Or spices of favourite local dishes
Under the hamburger overlay.
I may travel anywhere,
I could be anywhere.
I am all over the place,
Neither arriving nor departing.
I speak a lingua franca
Neither well nor badly,
Just well enough to buy a ticket,
Or get drunk quickly enough
To forget where I am
And where I am not.

Do not think

Do not think
I am here
To teach you
How to think.
I rush
To pack ideas
For you,
And hurry
To teach you
To meet the standards.
I do not stand still
And nor should you,
For in stillness
Comes thought.
Know enough
Not to know
To know enough
To meet a standard
But not set one.
This marks the level
Of not knowing
Below which you may not
Sink.
Above this
You risk aspiration –
A long awkward word
That does not know
How to stretch itself
Ever downwards,
But only up and out
Beyond the measured.
You must not aspire,
For aspiration must be followed
By thought
Do you not think?

The I-less I

With glittering pizzaz
And farting fanfares
Came the language of success,
Clubbing with clubs
And pubs, and pummeling words.
Images, images,
An industry of self-loathing
And indulgence –
You are too fat
You are too thin
You are too old
You need a car
You need a mortgage,
Hate yourself and your life, please,
It’s good for business.
Buy buy buy,
Bye-bye!
What happened to you?
Who me?
Yes you!
What about me?
Who are you?
I am this.
You are that?
Yes.
And if I took this away?
Then who?
Silence.
An I without an I,
An I-less I.