Saturday, 13 June 2009

Slow Blood Carves Rivers

I was birthed by trees
shown the light through tangled roots
encased in solitary, steeped bark

ravens were my guards
concealed behind leaves & branches & darkness

with alabaster skin and ashen features I slept
ribs tormented by the shivers of opium
the thick distance concealing my plight

years flooded in and escaped in seasons
time only witnessed in my decay

the river was my reprieve
she felt her way through rock through bone through fossil
mutely encroaching upon my tree

while months shed their hours and years took their toll
in silence and duty she carved
loosening bark, softening boughs
under a bed of floating leaves.

a sun splintered through the trees
I shook off the ophidian roots
the bark fell like dusk and dissolved
frail and blinded I walked
a pale fire chanting my name
I walked into the centre of that pale fire
and the centre was a heart

Friday, 12 June 2009

The Vanishing Dreams

like a rattle you bark your strange words
these mythological sentences crippled by pauses
your breath heavy and laboured
the dawn brings you alive
as you walk the room in shadows

outside the deep sedative of winter unfolds before our eyes
brittle - varnished in cobweb white
and you, alone in the mirror
bent in mylar shapes
your graceful neck with its deep set jewelry
collarbones like ivory pillars collapsed under love

the space between you and I is immense
your words lost in misdirected whispers
I feel almost confined
bound in blackness & repose

forgive me if I wait not for the sun to rise
the ghosts have surrounded my voice
and yours is drowned out in the vacuum

To Hover In This Majestic Forest

I speak
I speak
In drones and rolling echos
a tapestry illuminated by hums and murmurs
rich divides, tones and changes
curled ashen sirens and spontaneous prose

my incense is lit
fever drapes, hung recklessly on thin strands of hair
ornate earrings and olive eyes, deep mascara and mystery
perfumes of another realm and secrets to tell

we hover slightly above the light
it pierces our eyelids, creating space
like a pyramid of bent rainbows we disappear
folded like newborns into the heart of a blanket
painted dead and alive and anew
purple flowers, saffron tails & euphoric angels
stark and pressed together

outside, the echos push hard against the wall
a constant buzz, machinery flashbacks
until the passing blur of cars and crackling telephone lines
create a lush whiteboard on which to project our vanishings.

Thursday, 11 June 2009

Mid-heaven's Virtual Shrine

offer me silence, here in this temple
secluded beneath this morphine red tapestry
silver threads tie clouds to gilded suns
the ceiling boasts in marble and glitter
music etches forward
bare disciples touch strings, conjuring magic

through the windows the streets fall
awakened by mourning,
outside a child, frayed and sickly, weeps rubies
monsoon gutters the city
dead shadows walk under umbrellas,
the sea stands in awe
flashes of light emerge as lightning rages above

the mighty crack of Thor's hammer splinters the womb of night
trees shake under the onslaught
flowers perish in suffocating torrents
goats with their murderous intent shiver under awnings

entering the night I collapse under this crown
this bejeweled headdress polluted with sapphires, emeralds, amethysts
Egyptian gold, Indian silk
I brace the winds and steer directly into the eye of the storm
my riches robbed by the wind and stolen by the sea

the deluge drops heavy on my outstretched arms
it feels like an ablution
the blue pallor of my skin exposed
doused in the passing rage

cymbals crash from behind closed doors
strange tremors and echos
a priest in white robes removes his sandals and prays
before an idol, serene and hand painted
candles adorn his reverence, bathe his face in aura
incense burns, sifting

I feel the hundred thousand feet of pilgrims bruise the earth
like a swarm of locusts
glass eyed, fearless, invoking
faces smeared with powders
dull drums and ankle bracelets cough in the void
a parade of blind seers- mantra induced, hearts ablaze
priests split earth and rain with chants of solitude
I fall prey to their hypnotic sway

turmoil unravels from my perch, above the city
pylons beneath spit fire and hiss in whispers
deep fog snakes between streetlamps, aglow
this mysterious vision, this dream, this carnival
cloaked with the sting of incense,
fires of temples and the chants of monks

the throbbing monsoon abates

the skies break forth and envelop us all in still
a severe blue cuts the horizon
throngs scatter from their exposed hideouts
waves quell
fires fall to darkness
mantra's collapse
the translucent dawn rises on his stallion

in an instant we are reborn
reborn with seeing eyes
the fogs of glaucoma drop, like scabs
and the most wondrous sun rises deep and rested from the ocean
breathing perfect calm into our lungs
and in silence
in that fraught, delicate pastel
we are delivered.

Mantra To A Fallen Earth

Incandescent, we prompt flight
rising like talon bearing kestrels
keen eyes and empty stomachs spur us on
through a bleak sun we watch the earth engorge
oceans blanketing the wastelands in azure coverings,
land so dark and barren clinging to borders
visible rivers like veins on a sickly child coaxed to movement by high peaks
fallen cities spread their blackening death across acres of trees and red soil.

Rain hastens
The thick drops fall spilling
subdued on dark saffron earth
Blood peels, gentle and beautiful
Roots of the deodar's race forward
Craving this divine blood, so coloured and fragrant

[The thirst of trees is quenched under its frayed veins]

Renewed, we continue
Following the darkness of shadows
Shards of lightning collect under clouds scattering the earth with fire
Punishing rain rolls into the winds might
Fields turn to cemeteries
Burnt trees collapse
Violence in all its fury remains unchallenged
Silence reigns. A silence that is holy

An earth washed pure, sacrificed and subdued, peers forth
As the oceans rage.

These clouds are a comforting rest,
driven to patterns in which even I am lost
heaven above sheds its melodies,
harps and the suffering saints alight
angels wings and ghostly whispers shudder and shake me in my poise
my eyes redden in this glow
orchards of wise fruit and rivers of wine lay dormant
weeds of discontent reach through the gates and surrender
curled and dry under brilliant light.

I lay my head in this bath of questions
Limbs float effortlessly away from me
Rusting doors encase my body and I fear not
I fear not for I am not alone
a ghost who speaks "thy kingdom come" strokes my hair
as the vines creep forth aging this paradise
and the seraphic hymns glide into nothing.

With deities and fallen prophecies muted, sleep returns
Crushing gently against my temples

I curl, womb-like, into this vapor. Lost.
Ethereal visions enter and escape my dreams
I am confused as to what is life and what is make-belief
Violence and love are quelled
My heartbeat is stilled and pleasing
Sifting upwards to where the sun was painted in acrylics
flakes falling like gold rain on the Arabic-tiled floors
Where hollow armies raise fists and chanted
to gods unknown and therefore unconquered
dispersed in darkness by my wavering fever and the cup of wine.

I walk alone into the night
Crushed roses drip melancholy beside dry trees
The barking earth grates against my soles
I whisper into the mouth of a dying bird
embroidered wings flutter and break silently
the mist is hung like a drape
my hair soaked in the skies abandon.

The roots have died
These mighty trees are swept aside by mere breezes
the tall grasses of the plains are ablaze
the inky seas have frozen
We have lost this paradise, again.

The pure disappear on chariots of gold
drawn by silhouettes and sounds

All that is dream-like is replacing itself with mirrors

Wednesday, 10 June 2009

The Chords of Absence

For now I am left with memories
funeral pyres lit to temper
the steep waters, brown blooded and scattered with garlands
Vishnu, Shiva, Ganesh painted bright
the ghats gentle shadow
awash, bathed, lamenting in singed hair
deep the drums of ETERNAL resound
flat and full and faithful

I see in white and grey
turmeric hands- hashish clouds ascending
babbling spitting mouths of dry chested pilgrims
cracked chappals

saffron dipped cotton floats like deep sycamore leaves turning

this is no sanctuary
where vultures claw
chimes and bells lay waste to the breeze
the sun spills its belly and collapses
watering the river in gold and bronze

these bracelets shall remove me
these trinkets steer
where the wind and sun and rain abound
where are your watchful eyes
the eyes in pine, eucalyptus, oak
flooded canvasses adorned by Roerich
orange pekoe and morning roses scent
dying tales spoken in books

receive me, broken, sodden, blistered
with dust I anoint you
with rain your tears baptize me

I look up, and see trees
opium figurines replace branches with djinns
their arms ravage me
purged breath becomes a song I sing
for I laugh and I laugh and I laugh again
to death be told no mysteries
in deep moss there are no sounds
sleep wakes and sleep wanders

guard me in the wandering ether
through hypnotic flames, flickering blue
as the butterflies lull me to sleep
look not away, for I smile

Collapse (With Shadows We Fly)

from this well of seers only curses abound
murmured between frantic dervish swirls
remedies steep in far tombs watched by serpents
priests herald the dawn dripping through with ire
a seven-fold wave arises on the ocean
like a plague of horses, ears pinned back
muscles taut and locked
creating the shadow of a god, a phantom, an apparition
plummeting in crests

the mescaline replaces images with sounds
sinking soft into a temple tree
shamans waft antique cedar and teak over a fire
gray pendants shake above the flames
death chants told across ointment pots
recorded on yellowed manuscripts

I lie confined in this blank space
my movements are met with scorn
a low screen is slowly illuminated
with scenes of lust and abandon
i strain my eyes to create blurs
so that everything goes unwatched and unremembered
I want to create a vacuum in this place
soundless. windless. voiceless. imageless. bliss
remote vanishment. complete lack. volatile echo's.

THE END is gathering its strength
a death march is announced
a phalanx of skulls in red amber and folded gold
hollow faces march with unremitting stares
crows fly in rabid formations eager for blood
the sightless spirits bury themselves in the sand until the battle is spent

the rain opens with violence above and bleeds
calculated drops fall like spears
pools of frailty wash the ground
between fingers of the dying and fingers of the dead
a deep fog holds a blanket above
the last groans are being diluted by the distance we retreat

out there in the mist, the vapors dissipate, for the last time
dispelling the slow beauty of sehnsucht

Maya Awakes (Homage to Ira Cohen)

(photo by Ira Cohen)

she rests under bronze smoke
half faces dazed in laudanum
gold-leaf butterfly wings unfurl
stopping dead against her brow

her legs are bathed in silk
arms fanned like Sarasvati
as shadows move across in circles
like faceless apparitions.

years seem frozen in this chamber
almost as if she turned to stone
the wisps of velvet and amber
stir the air just enough to wake her

Tuesday, 9 June 2009

A Mistral

heaven has shed its veil
in clusters
like a drifting sea her space is guarded
by angelic shadows & rumour

dawn draws forth a sequined vapour
deep in resonance
cut from diamonds in extinct zephyr
loose - empty - brittle

dawn takes her place
in rusted halo's & copper hems
flutes announce the infinite loss
a legion of saints cast aside in rags
crowned in splendor moments before

a sun is birthed with chosen words
a light to illuminate this plunder
the dimming night
so silently retreats
folding through in ashes, blood and ink

we near the end
the ghost is frail
halcyon lullabies stir ether to wake
and to once again redeem the skies

Jupiter and Semele

transposed on this liquid blue sky, icons strung like lights
pillars carved with angels, cherubs, demons, ghosts
fashioned from gold
rubies shadow serene faces
silver ropes frayed and shedding their infinite tales
to these stained marble floors, mirroring the blood of the lamb
hung in repose with the flashes of the divine illuminating this chamber
were walls speak in motifs
floors silent and meditative
ceilings abounding in the light of silver and bronze
casting shadows of redemption across the pews
angels wings conceal the dark interiors
grey columns bearing the weight unnoticed
like the stems of roses, cursed for their thorns
soft silk passes inches above the ground
candles weeping wax and stuttering
incense lifts the shadows to new places
stirring the thoughts and forcing nostalgia

I sit in silence, firmly watching the image of Christ
the stained glass blackening from clouds
disturbing the light
the heavy doors allow others to enter
I see only Christ
pale and flowing in white cloaks
eyes affixed on impossible reaches
gazing out as if sorrowful in hope
lamenting something deeper than we can understand
the loss of humanity
the empty tombs of hope,
left to wither with light and incense and fear

The Dream Tapestry

severed leaves expose the vastness of their glory
ancient bark and sightless branches sturdy in repose
the steady rainfall.... grey and beholding
rivers quenched, soil watered, souls renewed
staring out between the high grass are eyes
wilderness nomads carving lines in the dirt
gathered from infinite pasts to roam
discarding the shackles of their ancestors
free to wander where there are no paths, no maps, no destinations
shivering under cloaks, wide eyed and hungry
the grass is bent under their slow movement
clutching flowers to remind them of their journeys

indian jewels adorn their necks
african sandals, peruvian blankets,
lost hair and restless spirits
huddling together under the spread of stars-
singing and watching their breath escape
these are the free
unhindered by love
sorrowful in their memories, yet hopeful in their dreams.

onward, they create paths that we cannot follow.

Monday, 8 June 2009

Shards & Splinters

my skin resembles iodine
under this yellow sickly light
folding the room in cholera washes

the shakes begin once again,
thick humid air like a shanghai parlour
dissolves between the blades of a fan

cramps and splashed ink permeate the room
the stench of sweat,
vomit and blood and a scattering of tablets

in this haze of whirring
in this platinum looking-glass
in this red hangover
in this toothless kiss
i am immortalized
printed heavy on white paper.

Memories Become Vacant

encased in glass the ghosts weep
fine threads of crystalline grief
night disappears in extinguished caution
as their hearts beat out in echo's

outside the horizon lays still
unfurling inch by inch in glorious strokes
the rested sky becomes a canvass
for dawns alchemic fingers

leaves catch the light and illuminate
woken from the blackness of sleep
the flowers turn upwards seeking light
beginning their slow dance in the wind

the love in my heart is bruised
her smell still weeps memories
trapped in ornaments and clothing
like ghosts encased in glass

Solitude In Blue

there is silence...........
in branches, roots......
.........a floor of leaves

.............where the breeze gathers
.....coaxing sleep..... is here I wish to dwell
in this perfect absence..............

Friday, 5 June 2009

First Light

Long pastures drift into the unhindered fog and vanish
A few branches pierce the sky
Mist curls upwards from the blackened earth, escaping into soundless wind
A lone crow twitches, pecking furiously at his feathers
The cold has set in,
The wind becoming an earth-born ocean intruding deep into our hearts.

Fossils of leaves lie bent in shapes and hapless...
Faint echoes signal the dusk is falling from afar
Burning through with a stunned fire.

The serpents have been awoken.

Clouds collapse in uneven formations cloaking the earth in a strange depth
The glowing after-burn of the sun is left as a straight line shot across the horizon, disappearing before our eyes
Darkness, consuming and thirst-full, inches forward.

There are no signs of life in this wilderness
Even the shaky breath of a whisper is lost in the silence
A seeping plague
Strong and eternal

We are left alone
Walking blind with arms outstretched
Breath and curses turning to ice on lips and tongues
Turning faster and faster in this utter emptiness.

We roam, alone.
Separated by the hostility of night.

Eyes shadowed and fingers crooked we await the first light.

Wednesday, 27 June 2001

The Shaking Glass

Oh! Silent
Oh! Blessed
Oh! Encompassing
Oh! Living
Oh! Faultless
Oh! Shadowed
Oh! Serene
Oh! Loved
Oh! Fragile
Oh! Listless
Oh! Fancied
Oh! Enlightened
Oh! Bathed
Oh! Adorned
Oh! Bemused
Oh! Treasured

Into this wind I proclaim
Into this ocean my voice loses
Into this tree my tears bring
Into this river falls my shadow
Into this shrine my words
Unto this mountain my feet
Into this tomb my garments
Into this ether my thoughts

May this light shine,
Peace awakens me
And I must awaken.