from BARDO

The stars are in our belly; the Milky Way our umbilicus.

Is it a consolation that the stuff of which we’re made

is star-stuff too?

– That wherever you go you can never fully disappear –

dispersal only: carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen.

Tree, rain, coal, glow-worm, horse, gnat, rock.

Roselle Angwin

Friday, 3 February 2012

west, again


Begin in the sudden rain and the almost-glimpse of a stranger more familiar than your own self

     you remember how on the hill the rocks rose up in a crowd, like sheep, and down below on the dark loch a single rhododendron shook out a purple skirt

     though the castle you thought you were seeking was not there
     may not be anywhere

but still that old blue boat bobs to the gentle swell of forage and retreat     forage and retreat     at the lochside stones

like a canticle of freedom

and round the point the ocean proper roars its praisesongs and laments


and somewhere else, west by west, a small boy on a big horse rides off into such a dream of happiness as he'll never know again


The names fizz: Merrymeet, Doddycross, Menheniot, then all the Tres Pols Pens of this ancient kingdom, my homeland. Sky's still blazing further west again. On this hill a cloud of rooks at dusk, a tall engine house (finger of chimney beseeching or admonishing), lakes, woods
          and then without intending vision blurs and I'm back at Boswednack where the gorse flames in yes this sudden rain and the little fields are canted towards Lyonesse and over by Zennor dwarf black cattle stand and stamp in the lee of granite walls near the mermaid church

where I'm pierced by inexplicable driving joy and sorrow indistinguishable the one from each


like waking up in your own life for the first time and knowing it to be good to be true


Now, midnight, and only the white noise of the surf (obliterating thought) and the breakers' dark yawn translating into white blossom, spitting small white stones like teeth

a flock of dream-birds stalled in flight

and only this deeper and deeper white-noise silence
of not-I not-you
an animation
of shadows questions laughter
without words or thought of words
stealing identity
time and thoughts of time dissolved
no inside no outside

the great return


February late dawn sun stage left waves freighted already with surfers and a raucousness of gull-mourn and that strange hazy clarity of light-with-frost erasing and making sharp simultaneously the headlands down to the Lizard, all the lost possible countries we could inhabit

and maybe do without knowing
maybe have     maybe will

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