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on song

October 3, 2018

drunk on song
drowning in song
in the family of song

toiling in the vineyards
trampling, pressing,
fermenting and bottling
that the songs may
flow like wine

created in isolation
by alchemy and
spirit guides and
gaffer tape and
condiments

labouring in hope and vain
casting nets and setting traps
picking through the heaps
for the overlooked and the
bypassed

polished and buffed
and then paraded down the catwalk
for public judgement

and when it grows,
when a song lands in
sympathetic soil
and in time the voices rise
in chorus, in uplift,
thickening the air and the blood
the embrace of the crowd

drunk on song
drowning in song
in the family of song

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the thunder

September 28, 2018

I hear across the sky
I think I hear
across the darkening sky
the long slow rolling thunder of distant hearts

I hear across the plains
I think I hear
across the shrouded plains
the long slow rolling thunder of distant hearts

I hear across the mountains
I think I hear
across the veiled mountains
the long slow rolling thunder of distant hearts

I hear across the mirror
I think I hear
across the smoky mirror
the long slow rolling thunder of distant hearts

cinnamon toast

September 18, 2018

the beauty of the strange
and the beauty of the unstrange
are forming an orderly queue at my door
the line stretches all the way to
the innocence of cinnamon toast

I left the ceiling on
I left the windows wide
and when I came home
they were still there, shining bright
like the innocence of cinnamon toast

when you think you need more
often you really need less
all I seem to accumulate now
is instruments and paper and memories
and the innocence of cinnamon toast

the beauty of the strange
and the beauty of the unstrange
are forming an orderly queue at my door
the line stretches all the way to
the innocence of cinnamon toast

breaking the fall

August 29, 2018

moving in regular patterns then
falling into patterns then
falling through the gaps between the patterns
so trying to explore new patterns and then
reverting to old patterns
becomes something of a pattern

tchaikovsky

August 27, 2018

not with the shouting
nor the rush
a day can unfold
like a freshly laundered shirt
choosing its cards at random
but carefully

there’s so much to celebrate
and so much to mourn
moving from one movie
to another movie
from one scene to another scene
those of us who are not monks
are not monks

still somehow all that is needed
to raise a heart
and flick a smile
and squeeze a tear
is a melody
surfacing like a whale

rising
breaching
sounding
rising
breaching
sounding

when we are called

August 21, 2018

when the call comes
seldom are we ready
despite our daily search
for angels and guides
and guidance

we thirst for a guiding hand
a hint, a clue
which path, which door

and yet
when we are called
we pick up our souls
and walk towards the
angels that we seek

inadvertent ornithology

August 9, 2018

arbitrary heavens and necessary hells
I see they’re offering me premium bollocks again
this time at a discount rate
slipping between layers of passing night ships
in the shadows, still,
while shambles shamble by

should it be warpaint on my brush
flicking through the breezes of change
across the swamp of time

sometimes we stare our demons down
and sometimes we turn our backs
and let the demons get on and ride us
across the plains into the setting sun
birds of ill omen hovering
birds of good omen heading back to the nest

still betting my best that there’s
a way out of humanity’s collective mess
it can be a long slow passage in despair

to make and then destroy is the way of the world
blah blah blah, as the wise one said
but excuse me, I’ve got a bird to catch