Month: Aug 2016

The Flesh-Market in Nice – A Meditation

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At 5.30am, after dropping my daughter off at the ferry to Corsica, I drove the length of the Promenade des Anglais in Nice, from the ferry-port to the airport. Almost 7 km (4 miles). I passed the huge display of flowers left by mourners against the sea wall as a memorial to the 84 people killed by a 19-ton lorry driven by a crazed French-Tunisian with a grudge 44 days ago. As the traffic lights were against me I had time to hear the echoes of the screams and feel the thuds and breaking bones within my soul. This world revolves through pirate seas. One is only here for the lessons and adventure and ‘random’ madness proving what it means to be a (temporarily) disconnected soul from Essence.

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The Souls of Dogs [Sonnet for Leo, who died August 19th 2016]

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“But do dogs have souls?” he speculated.
“How many angels will fit on a pin?”
I replied; and hoped it demonstrated
how gauche, absurd, his inference had been.

They wear hearts on their tails; no thought is hid
from view — unlike the way that humans do
suppress their feelings, lie and keep the lid
held firmly down and not reveal what’s true.

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The Tumbling Curtains [poem]

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From the corner of his eye he saw the curtains start to fall
from stage-left — stage-right (actor standing midst it all),
a little back from where the velvet cloths would meet and
where he earlier had stood (an X marked where he’d been).
Thusly, when they fell, his act would disappear from view.
He kicked away his seat. “It’s happening on cue”, thought he.
“No place now for complacency or apathy in anything I do”.

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Recovered Memories

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My daughter found a bag in the basement of a house in which we used to live in France some years ago and has just given it to me. It contains an old poetry notebook of mine from more than 30 years ago (some years before she was born!), containing dated handwritten first drafts and random thoughts. (No mobile phones or mass personal computers then 😉 ). The bag also had loads of photos I took on a Ricoh pre-digital era SLR camera, including many I took after breaking into Greenham Common USAF base in broad daylight to photograph the bunkers there which housed cruise missiles. I took a lot of risks in those days. Guess nothing’s changed! 😀

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The front cover of one of my poetry notebooks from the 1980s, “Poèmes et Pensées”.

 

 

 

 

 

poems_et_pensees_insideOne of the poems in the notebook, entitled “The Cleansing”, written to a friend who’d had an abortion when she was an early teenager and still felt anguish about it in her 30s when I knew her (and was then her lover). [Sidenote: the word “awesome”, in the days when I wrote this poem, did not have the rather silly meaning which it has now (when even an ice-cream can be described as “awesome”!). The original meaning of the word denotes a terrible and/or humbling sense of gravity when faced with an overwhelming situation]

 

Truth is like Poetry

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truth_is_like_poetry
This is a completely testable hypothesis. Put a photo of your cat or your dinner (or a suggestive selfie, or a quote from a new age “author”) online one day. Then put a poem on the next day and an investigative exposé article the next. Then compare the results! 😀