trying to focus / on walking

                                   trying to focus
                           on walking

                           trying
                     to focus on being
                     I managed to
                           give up

                     and found that the pavement passed
                           through me –
                     through my abdomen even –
                           one way

                     and the cars passed oblivious
                           to me
                           the other

 

 

 

————w(O)rmholes________________________________|—–

abdomen wormhole: training the mind
awareness wormhole: The Boats of Vallisneria by Michael J. Redford – On Doing Nothing
being wormhole: through the pane – poewieview #34
cars wormhole: The Boats of Vallisneria by Michael J Redford – Safe Home
letting go wormhole: even / a second
passing wormhole: passing skies
walking wormhole: Lapping Reflections [Deep Within Waters] by Mark L. Redford – I suddenly / remembered

 

through the pane – poewieview #34

          spikes in constant
          exchange through the pane
          try in vain to
          puncture the sky; sky

          rising
          but – what – shall – I –
          be; steps upwards, steps
          aside, but – what – is – going – on

          look-away-
          turn-head-to-friend –
          check, with love –
          look-back

          shall I leaf the books,
          shall I lengthen the wick,
          interrogate streets, but –
          will – the – streets – listen …

          exiting languidly in the late green afternoon
          amongst the pipes, back windows and
          soot-stained Victorian houses all about
          the lonely square

 

peered through Eight Line Poem & Changes, 1971, after January 10th 2016

 

 

————w(O)rmholes________________________________|—–

afternoon & Bowie & looking wormhole: weight of high sash windows – poewieview #33
being wormhole: travel
books wormhole: Life on Mars? – poewieview #31
death wormhole: Lapping Reflections [Deep Within Waters] by Mark L. Redford – the soft canticle of the gourds:
doing & windows wormhole: languidly close the portal
green wormhole: fresh destiny
life wormhole: The Boats of Vallisneria by Michael J Redford – Safe Home
listening wormhole: my seat // now
love wormhole: listen willya
sky wormhole: passing skies
streets wormhole: coagulating
time wormhole: hello, luvvey, do you want a cup of tea?
Victorian houses wormhole: opening

 

travel

                                                travel

                I can’t get a comfortable seat
                to see the poem, even though

                I am in newplace on holiday,
                I cannot see I cannot see

                in this world of leisure and elasticity
                because of a dream that

                delivers me broken unto the world,
                then because I cannot

                tolerate the break, I fracture from sight
     to the world

 

 

 

————w(O)rmholes________________________________|—–

being wormhole: even / a second
career wormhole: chartless …
holiday & seeing wormhole: too late:
identity wormhole: the purple mist between
travelling wormhole: gone black
work wormhole: The Boats of Vallisneria by Michael J Redford – Safe Home
world wormhole: hello, luvvey, do you want a cup of tea?

 

mlr presents #1 – UNCANNILY GREEN poems

I’ve decided to stay true to my ‘almost indefatigable and quietly militant naïveté …‘ and just upload the bugger so I can b-r-e-a-t-h-e again with open eyes; just link over to the ‘Poemics‘ page and download – it’s free, unless you HAVE got a one shilling coin, in which case … you can keep it (free gift with the first issue) AND have a mlr poemic, SMASH Collector’s Item, first issue; go on, get it now, before stocks run out!!!

mlr presents #1 - July 2015

languidly close the portal

        the Eye in Greenwich Village
        casts elliptic light

        across drape and carpet
        striated by frame – but

        he finds what he needs
        under bough of quiet tree;

        in the hostel room, light
        was triangular and leaning

        but when came time to act,
        the sole witness, pink

        anemone in branching shrub,
        saw the beautiful eyes

        languidly close the portal

 

held within from Strange Tales #118 outwards, ‘The Possessed’, March 1964; Lee & Ditko

 

 

————w(O)rmholes________________________________|—–

carpet wormhole: carpet worn / to the backing – poewieview #30
curtains wormhole: Lapping Reflections [Deep Within Waters] by Mark L. Redford – moment
doing wormhole: magnetic field
Dr Strange & windows wormhole: fresh destiny
eyes wormhole: The Boats of Vallisneria by Michael J Redford – Safe Home
light wormhole: the purple mist between
pink wormhole: coagulating

 

fresh destiny

                the effect of other
                hangs like water down a single pane
                over the soul: free it

                from bricks and mortar
                transport it across
                all the empty chasms of nightmare

                where there is no
                echo; there is always
                choice to realise within the green thickness

                of glass, there is
                always the turn of
                fresh destiny

 

dripped from “Dr. Strange Master of Black Magic!”, 1st appearance of Dr Strange in Strange Tales #110, July 1963 by Lee & Ditko

 

 

————w(O)rmholes________________________________|—–

buildings wormhole: ‘hope for things to come’
Dr Strange wormhole: coagulating
echo wormhole: hello, luvvey, do you want a cup of tea?
glass wormhole: the figure “46” / in frosted glass
green & society wormhole: Lapping Reflections [Deep Within Waters] by Mark L. Redford – I suddenly / remembered
rain wormhole: The Boats of Vallisneria by Michael J. Redford – Contents
windows wormhole: The Boats of Vallisneria by Michael J Redford – Safe Home

 

Lapping Reflections [Deep Within Waters] by Mark L. Redford – I suddenly / remembered

                                drift from the land continues
                the prosperous rings expand, there are

                shirts and elbows in the Nag’s Head
                and smoke curling to the gloom above

                Lordly entry to the fields, in the center,
                the last sheaf, left standing; he

                knocks out his pipe on the window sill,
                echoing across still fields; the poem’s

                ‘flames upon the alter’ – energy of the
                sun; strolling through the green evening

                                I suddenly
                                remembered

 

read the collected work as it is published: here
this is an appliquiary to: The Boats of Vallisneria by Michael J Redford – Safe Home

 

 

————w(O)rmholes________________________________|—–

evening & field & smoke & sun & walking wormhole: The Boats of Vallisneria by Michael J Redford – Safe Home
green wormhole: hello, luvvey, do you want a cup of tea?
society wormhole: coagulating

 

The Boats of Vallisneria by Michael J Redford – Safe Home

Safe Home

“Drift from the land continues.”   Thus was I informed by the ‘Farmer’s Weekly’ one Friday morning as it lay open on the breakfast table.   This drift from the land affects not only agriculture but also the structure of the village community.   Of those who leave the land, many also leave the village their forefathers had inhabited for generations and go to the towns to find employment in industry, and of those who stay, most become commuters and spend most of their lives working in and travelling to and from the city.   It is therefore becoming increasingly difficult to find the Coopers or the Charmans, the Thatchers or the Reeves whose descendants had practised their crafts in the same village for centuries, and I am saddened at the thought of these links, these direct human links with the past slowly withering away.   Of the hosts who patronise my own local pub, there are but five or six who are connected in some way with farming or country life.   The normal topics of conversation (apart from the usual British subjects of cricket and the weather) are now the trials and tribulations of a day at the office, the trouble one has had with the car or the recently installed central heating system and a somewhat heated discussion on ‘That’ programme on telly last night.

The truly rural community is not only dwindling but is also being diluted by the absorption of the townsman in the form of new towns and from the expanding ring of the more prosperous classes as they move out further and further from their place of work as life in the city becomes more and more intolerable.

A small but interesting side effect of this movement of the population can be noted not only in the topic of conversation, but also in the mode of dress.   At one time it was only the more prosperous members of the community who could afford smart suits of fine materials and were able to drive around in ostentatious cars while the remainder had to make do with serge or rough tweed or any hard wearing material which could weather many winters.   Now, prosperity has increased to such a degree that, on a Saturday evening, the car park of the Nag’s Head is full of shining cars none of which I swear is over five years old, while inside silk rubs shoulders with worsted.   What is left of the local gentry now distinguishes itself by arriving at the pub in a battered Land Rover covered in muck and mud and dressing in rough tweeds and cords, and if it were not for his public school accent, he could quite easily be mistaken for a tramp.   You will find him mostly in the public bar playing dominoes or cribbage and drinking pints of bitter while his city cousins monopolise the saloon discussing the affairs of the day over a scotch and dry.   No matter how affluent the society or how adamant is one’s denial of the existence of ‘class’, the differences will always be there to be seen.

Nag's Head

One such a tramp visited me yesterday to confirm some arrangements with regard to the harvest festival.   He was a man of my grandfather’s generation who had lived in the village in pre-dilution days.   The common bond of farming had drawn us together when I first visited the Nag’s Head in Ramsden Heath, and ever since we have discussed, gesticulated and argued about farming, I, learning something from his methods and he (I am vain enough to assume) learning something from mine.   So it was that two tramps (and I call myself a tramp simply because I had not yet changed from my working clothes, not because I make claim to being part of the local heritage) sat at an open window one late summer’s eve discussing and reminiscing about the harvest.   The heat of the day had left its mark upon the still air and golden rays slanted through the window picking out the curling smoke from my friend’s pipe before it disappeared into the gloom above.   His eyes ascended with the smoke and his thoughts went with them.

“`Course it’s not the same now – never will be, harvest has lost most of its true meaning.   Today it has become merely another chore that has to be dealt with.”

I thought of the congregation that would attend the little grey church on Sunday.   Ninety percent of them would be townsmen whose only connection with harvest is the bread roll eaten at their game of bridge.   My friend was speaking again.

“Nowadays the only people conscious of harvest home are those who reap it and of those few involved, only a fraction are aware of the full solemnity of the occasion.”

That’s true.   In the days of scythes and flails, even up to the time of the threshing machine, harvest time, that milestone of true country life, was steep in ceremony.   First a ‘Lord’ and ‘Lady’ of the harvest would be elected to lead the reapers into the field.   This was a solemn occasion for the sweat, toil and the blistering work was still ahead of them.   The long days of drudgery passed slowly as acre by acre the long stems fell to the scythe and backs bent continually cutting, gathering, binding and stooking.   Finally, upon the last day and in the center of the last acre stood the last sheaf.   If one man was to reap this final sheaf alone, he would be courting disaster.   The entire company therefore, would gather round and, at a signal form the ‘Lord’ or the ‘Lady’ (depending upon local custom), they would all hurl their hooks at the few remaining stems.   The corn dolly would then be woven to appease the spirits, then the back slapping and the chasing and kissing of the girls would begin.   More merriment would take place that evening when the whole company would assemble at the farmhouse for refreshment in the form of rough (very rough) cider and ale.

When the crop was fit for carrying and the last load had been carted in from the fields led by the ‘Lady’ of the harvest, then would come the harvest supper with its eating, drinking, toasting and singing, and soon after, the gleaning bell would ring out across the still fields.

There is always a stillness in the fields when harvest is over and yesterday was no exception.   There was such a calm in fact, that as the old gentleman opposite me knocked out his pipe on the window sill, our Jersey heifer Molly, who lay half asleep on the other side of the hoppit, turned her brown face lazily in our direction.   Nowadays there is no ceremony.   Like most milestones, harvest has been enveloped in the growth of progress and forgotten.   The old man spoke again.

“Of course harvest was of greater significance in those days, for if harvest was poor, hardship and deprivation would be the farmworker’s constant companion throughout the year, that’s why there was such joy and genuine thanksgiving when the crop was safe home.”

I received a mental picture of a field heavy with ripened wheat, the hard fat grains shimmering in the heat of summer and gold sheathed stems, faint bowed by heavy heads, stood as if they themselves were in prayer.   Then I saw beneath this deeply moving scene, the reality of sweat and toil, of aching backs, parched throats and calloused hands.   And yet the workers could still infuse a gaiety into the drudgery; even at the end of the last long day, they still had energy to laugh and sing and chase the girls across the fields.   Although there is still much hard work to be done at harvest time, the worker’s nagging fear of a crop failure is gone; the direct contact between harvester and Mother Earth has been severed and much of the toil has disappeared – but then so has much of the gaiety.

My old friend stood up and stretched.

“Even if it was a bad harvest,” he said glancing at his watch, (it was two hours past opening time), “there would always be a sheaf put to one side for the festival, partly as thanksgiving for that already received, no matter how little this might be, and partly as a prayer for the future.”

I took down my leather-bound jacket from the back door and thought of Longfellow’s words: ‘Like flames upon the alter shine the sheaves,’ flames that took a year to kindle, a year of energy which, if funnelled into a second, could move a mountain.

Strolling towards the Nag’s Head in the cool, green evening, my face stinging from the noon day sun, I suddenly remembered something.

“By the way,” I said, “what exactly was it you came to see me about?”

 

read the collected work as it is published: here

 

 

————w(O)rmholes________________________________|—–

cars wormhole: Life on Mars? – poewieview #31
city wormhole: tired
evening wormhole: Lapping Reflections [Deep Within Waters] by Mark L. Redford – moment
eyes & speech wormhole: coagulating
field & sun wormhole: The Boats of Vallisneria by Michael J Redford – Simon Upon The Downs
history wormhole: ‘hope for things to come’
life wormhole: chartless …
morning & walking wormhole: Lapping Reflections [Deep Within Waters] by Mark L. Redford – gull circling out at sea
Ramsden Heath wormhole: The Boats of Vallisneria by Michael J. Redford – Olly
smoke wormhole: being in love – poewieview #26
table wormhole: what life went on
talking wormhole: my seat // now
tv wormhole: “Darling” – poewieview #28
windows wormhole: the purple mist between
work wormhole: Lapping Reflections [Deep Within Waters] by Mark L. Redford – mmpph’

 

chartless …

                                                                chartless …

                                … since 1967
                                no moorings no ports
                                my search for land
                                through comics poetry music religion
                                reclusive

                                … my own Dad
                                moored in music and
                                an ideal partner outside
                                his family his job his own business
                                reclusive

                                … people landlocked
                                from trauma have
                                houses and lifestyle
                                and children and soap and opera
                                all private

                                                … all susceptible to cults
                                and all of life is a
                fluid cult …

 

 

 

————w(O)rmholes________________________________|—–

abandonment & Dad & family wormhole: what life went on
career wormhole: dry rot
comics wormhole: Doctor Strange I – the trashcan tilted the better to see now the street
groundlessness & searching wormhole: hello, luvvey, do you want a cup of tea?
life wormhole: passing skies
music wormhole: words tumble like / boulders – poewieview #25
people wormhole: even / a second
poetry wormhole: Lapping Reflections [Deep Within Waters] by Mark L. Redford – autumn
sea wormhole: The Boats of Vallisneria by Michael J Redford – Simon Upon The Downs

 

passing skies

                      the life of statues
                      calcific gaze and
                      height of feeling

                      quiet above all
                      hubbub oblivious
                      to the caresses of

                      passing skies

 

 

 

————w(O)rmholes________________________________|—–

life wormhole: lonely and free
passing wormhole: with endless love
sky wormhole: hello, luvvey, do you want a cup of tea?