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Posts Tagged ‘Poetry’

Earthen

8 February 2014 Leave a comment

‘[…] Bearings taken, markings, cardinal points,
Options, obstinacies, dug heels, distance,
Here and there and now and then, a stance.’

(From ‘The Aerodrome’ by Seamus Heaney)

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Newton’s Laws

29 April 2011 Leave a comment

I. Accelerate

Engines run: there is work done
When we travel. I run
Across the platform. Doors
Are closing: . . . . . . .

So we progress. There is work done,
Or so I reckon; there is work done
When we travel. So we progress

And we regress. I run
Across the platform, an engine running
Back. Please mind
__ the gap.

II. Idle

‘Your reckoning is excellent. I –
Sum this up for me, will you?’
Very well: this is
_____________ the sum. This is
How engines run, and thoughts
Run parallel; how they travel! In a day
More than I could reckon. But this,

The sum
Of our trajectories: the sum
I reckon where I rest, where I rest;
They come to rest, here
On the shape
Of you.

Categories: Writing Tags:

In Hope

2 August 2010 Leave a comment

To my relentless consciousness
(If only to prove that I
Can logic defy),

I refuse to stop myself
From undermining me;
I determine that tomorrow I
Will be worse off.

I want to be justified
By not having needed justification.

For all that, this could be
My attempt
At moderation through excess.

Yet my refusal
Is not a retreat,
Is a hell-ward headlong rush to prove
That I am not sinking.

I need to feel
Like I needed this.

In the hope of a new course,

Categories: Writing Tags: ,

Impasse

I. Subjection

The smell of anger is a reek.
The recriminations that ensue could only be
Ugly. It is an ugly thing. I recoil
From the fester of your self-recriminations.

I can tell from the smell.

– No need to uncover it! It was not
A challenge; there are no
Fears to face, not even the thing that repulses you.
You’ve already established that you’re an expert
At dealing with things repellent, that your disgust is
Well-managed, whatever your
Other failings may be.

II. Compliance

I hesitate to call your silence
Obdurate. Is it?

Is it
A retreat? Or
A revolt?
A revolution? Or is it
Both? Because you can’t lose what you give up.

Could it be the Healing kind?
That makes me laugh, and I worry
If I am transformed, a sadist
In my convulsion.
Could I laugh at a whipping, be party to
An abasement?

They say men who have been administered
A proper beating on the feet
Never laugh again.
I think you might have been similarly debilitated;
I’ve seen the way your eyes shut down. First you stare,
Then you
Stare.

And I try not to. I’m afraid
It is my glance that paralyzes you.

Categories: Writing Tags:

Moorings

21 October 2007 Leave a comment

Asked,
‘Do old photographs become more real,
Or less?’ I didn’t say

That un-real is
Letting the real be real, and
Making the real
Real.

This is what it means
To be grounded.

And I feel so optimistic
There’s an edge to the wild
And reckless: which is
Joy.

(For Mel.)

Categories: Writing Tags:

Smooth Flights And Soft Landings

17 October 2007 Leave a comment

So we built it
As high as all of two decks

And a sky! and as wide
As a destination.

So we built it,
Making history, first

To commence commercial operations,
Making history in the transaction.

It was the first
Of nineteen, and twenty

Aluminium hulks, now grounded, say
It won’t be the last.

So we built it
Like we build dreams.

So we built it:
I still don’t see why
We can’t wish
Upon an airplane.


(On the arrival of SIA’s first Airbus A380 in Singapore on 17 October, 2007. My report.)

Categories: Writing Tags:

Watchtower

12 October 2007 Leave a comment

Watchman, your tower stands.
It is your singular prison.

The tower echoes your prayer, made in
Silence: such was its fervency;
No wish for swift victory and a swift end to the watch.

The sentry’s thoughts are subject to the will;
On a long watch, this is an abandoned yielding.
Subject also is his gaze, bound by
casements,
a horizon,
the bearing.

Watchman, what weight constrains you?
Only the weight your Tower bears
In addition to your self.

As surely as your duty is ordained,
You are your own jailor.

(For Tim.)

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