so pleased to see you again

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                oh, my loves, who look at me
                with eyes that dull-echo from

                lifetimes back “don’t I love you,
                don’t you owe me?” but cannot

                remember; yes, yes you do, yes
                I do, with so much real interest;

                I will love, I will do, what needs
                to be done, and short-circuit all

                this vanity and indifference;
                enough of peripatetic desire and

                unsustainable will, I owe your
                dear sweet faces (so much to

                account, so much to invest) a
                truer nature to acknowledge,

                a current in to which to plug,
                a circuit around which to light –

                exponential to the bursting sky –
                space-walking gloriously around

                the gravity of our own true natures,
                so pleased to see you again

 

Bodhisattvacharyavatara I, 17-19

 

 

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

compassion wormhole: transmuted
doing wormhole: everwhile
echo wormhole: open window
eyes & lifetimes & sky wormhole: that comicbookshop … // … in dreams
faces wormhole: Sylvia
light & love wormhole: writing: // in turn
others wormhole: ‘field of corn …’
seeing wormhole: ah … // oh … // meanwhile … // … // tha ya ta …
space wormhole: within
speech wormhole: Lapping Reflections [Deep Within Waters] – intemperance

 

Lapping Reflections [Deep Within Waters] – agricultural show

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                agricultural show

                too great a proportion
                of most of our life
                already ordered to us

                neck still sizzling
                from the heat of the
                day, individuals lost

                under endless hats
                fold into dim worlds
                of heaving canvass

                and creaking ropes
                what matter if we cover
                the same ground twice

                a walk of life with fresh
                interest, following
                long abandoned routes

 

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

 

 

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

life & people & walking wormhole: The Boats of Vallisneria by Michael J. Redford – The Agricultural Show
living wormhole: interim
society wormhole: that comicbookshop … // … in dreams
sun wormhole: open window
world wormhole: ah … // oh … // meanwhile … // … // tha ya ta …

 

The Boats of Vallisneria by Michael J. Redford – The Agricultural Show

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The Agricultural Show

Walking for pleasure is one thing, walking because you have to is another, but in between the two comes walking round an agricultural show.   This of course, is purely self-imposed and must surely be classed as walking for pleasure, for the majority who attend do so without thought of executing any business.   Yet the final effect at the end of the day is the same as if one had been ordered on a route march across the Sinai Desert.   With swollen feet and aching backs the hosts disperse towards evening and flop lifelessly into their cars, their faces and neck still sizzling from the heat of the day.   Of course some shows are ill-fated with regard to the weather while others have not known a wet day for perhaps a quarter of a century, but on the whole, the shows fare well, the majority being held between the months of June and August.   This however is rather an unfortunate time to hold a show for it is normally a hectic time of the farm, what with mowing, baling and stacking hay.   It is even more unfortunate if a tractor laden with a couple of tons of hay (and it usually is at times like this) breaks down in the middle of a field, for an urgent call to the local agricultural engineers will receive the reply – “I’m sorry sir, but all the mechanics are at the show.”

Although each being in this world is an individual, the milling mass at an agricultural show can be divided into four main groups and if the truth were known there is to me, as much delight in studying the people as in studying the latest advances in agricultural technology.   (Taking this one stage further, I wonder how often it is I who have been the object of study).

I do not however include in these groups competitors for the equestrian events, for they and their retinues are a species apart and one could devote a sizeable volume to them alone.   Neither do I include the wide-eyed children who dart here, there and everywhere, sucking ice creams and soggy hot dogs, climbing onto tractors and falling into milk churns.   The first of the groups is the ‘immaculate’ group.   It is the bowler-deer-stalker hatted group that walks with militant step and serious face and prods at little pieces of paper with its shooting sticks.   The majority of this group have dangling from their lapels little cardboard discs with ‘Official’, ‘Judge’ or ‘Member’ stamped upon it in gold, and includes the ‘upper crust’, the gentleman farmer and the estate owner.   They wear either a bow tie or a club tie or maybe an old boy’s school tie.

The next group is that of the working farmer.   Here the hats have turned into soft, tweedy trilbies or pork pies.   There is a slight roundness of shoulder and the stride is long and loping.   The gait appears clumsy, yet after years of striding ploughed fields and climbing stacks, most farmers are as sure footed as mountain goats.   A young fourteen year old friend of mine is a supreme example of this.   He can skim across a freshly ploughed field like a hare and still keep pace with someone running on the flat.   Pipes and old walking sticks are the armaments of this group and are used to challenge, prod and probe new machinery or inspect the rows of tethered beasts waiting to enter the show ring.   This group is generally of a suspicious nature, non-committal and not easily swayed by the remarkable time, money and labour saving claims of the mountainous pile of literature thrust eagerly into its hands.   At the entrance to the trade stand beams the host.   He laughs very easily and his handshake is somewhat violent.   “Hello there, wonderful to see you again old boy, come in and have a drink.”   They disappear into the dim world of heaving canvass and creaking ropes.

The group that is always well represented at the shows is that of the farm worker.   He arrives in his best suit, polished boots and cap, his face can be likened to a bake potato and his smile is broader and more frequent than those of the other groups.   Unaccustomed to this mode of dress, it is not long before the tie is removed and the shirt front unbuttoned.   Soon the jacket comes off and is stuffed into the shopping bag containing the day’s ‘wittals’.   Some even go so far as to remove the cap, though why they should have the desire to do so on this particular day is beyond me, for judging from the pure white band on the upper part of their foreheads, the cap is never removed from one year’s end to the other.   He is disgusted at prices in the beer tent, but tolerates this as being one of the prices to be paid for a rare day’s outing with the family.   Old acquaintances are renewed more in this group than in the others, for farm workers move around more than farmers.   Friendly insults are bandied about and a sly drink is attempted before the womenfolk can find them and drag them off to the Women’s Institute tent.

The final group belongs to those whose only connection with country life is an occasional weekend outing in the car.   It consists of those who have farmed only in their dreams or whose children have a strong leaning in that direction.   Although their attire is variable, this group can normally be segregated by their complexions.   Even those who have communed with the elements for a fortnight whilst on holiday do not achieve the deeply ingrained weathering of the farm worker’s face.   It is a purely superficial mask through which the white lines of the brow, furrowed from the unaccustomed glare of the sun, can be detected.   Apart from this there is no strong characteristic linking these people together as a group for they all come from different walks of life.   Perhaps they walk a little faster than most and do not linger long in any one place, but no matter how disconnected this group is within itself, it can claim one thing in common with the rest and that is, a keen interest in farming or some aspect of country life.

On passing through the gates of a country or agricultural show, I invariably make for the little kiosk which sells the catalogues and on the map therein, I religiously trace out a route between the various avenues.   This route is designed to take me round to every trade stand, exhibition and demonstration in the shortest distance, retracing my steps as little as possible.   Having completed this task, an outstanding display a little way up the centre avenue catches my eye, so, thrusting the catalogue into my pocket, I decide to see what it’s all about.   My curiosity satisfied, I am attracted to a large group of people huddled around a mysterious object on display a little further down the line.   By the time I have made the front row, all thoughts of adhering to the route so meticulously worked out, have left me.   This happens every time I attend an agricultural show and I invariably end up by walking ten times as far as is necessary.   But so what?   Most of our lives have too great a proportion of it already ordered for us; there is far too much routine.   What matters it if we do cover the same ground twice?   One can always discover some fresh point of interest that had been passed by first time round.

 

read the collected work as it is published: here

 

 

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

field wormhole: Lapping Reflections [Deep Within Waters] – intemperance
life wormhole: everwhile
people wormhole: embodying
walking wormhole: faintly apricot air?

 

what wounds have you got?

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                           part V

I have been in, but not part of, the stadium for such a long time
it is here, all about and above, creaking, flapping, I
had thought it didn’t exist at all; it is cardboard and canvas
standing up against the inevitable winds, and snow

so much construction, so little structure, so little warmth
it is cold here in this quiet wasteland, but I sit
to one side now – out of the way – and shut my ears
to the noises and voices.   I still have a lamp.   I try

to keep warm by it.   I can’t see them – out in the night
and cold – are there any other souls lost, out there?
Come and join me over here.   If we sit together
I can get quite a lot of heat from this lamp.   Let’s see –

what wounds have you got?

 

since this was written and published years ago I have subsequently and finally retired … from being the ‘ghost with open wound‘; I am now, just cold

 

 

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

breakdown wormhole: monument to vainglory
career & teaching wormhole: everwhile
depression wormhole: beepbeep
ghosts wormhole: Lapping Reflections [Deep Within Waters] – intemperance
identity wormhole: ah … // oh … // meanwhile … // … // tha ya ta …
results-led education & voices wormhole: just saying, is all VI: // accountable / for my own outbreath / …
snow & sound wormhole: open window
wind wormhole: time

 

everwhile

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reading direction

 

                                                       everwhile
                           the trying                          I was
                          without                                    of value
                   have done                                          in what
                         could                                              I did
                        that I                                                 and what
                        to say                                               I said
                         I tried                                           quite
                        and what                                   despite
                                   to do                          what I
                                                tried

 

 

 

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

career wormhole: comfy
circular poem wormhole: my way
doing & life wormhole: that comicbookshop … // … in dreams
teaching wormhole: monument to vainglory

 

that comicbookshop … // … in dreams

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dc-gogocheck

that comicbookshop …

where the sidestreets meet together off the highstreets
under slanting shadows down the rear pipework of façades and blackened window
from so much higher up than could never concern us it’s frightening,
the morning after Hopper’s Nighthawks,
is closing down

the ones I try to get to when I find myself done in town
(right after the frustration of trying to get somewhere or the anxiety of trying to
get away from somewhere that always follows me) but never arrive at;
I make my various ways there, I know the routes
like the back of my hand

the ones with warped door stuck at the top or stuck at the bottom
(will the glass pane hold), with step onto lino once lemon and grey with hope
now one with the floorboards sagging under warren of backrooms (forgotten lifetimes
wormholes everywhere) to the pulp of paper and number for finding,                
are closing down; I

comicbookshop

should have patronised them more, I suppose;
`still haven’t found that second issue, that elusive fourth, and the stacks
just kept on sliding: lettering and universes pressing their skies and moons into my eyeball
but I couldn’t keep up with them, blinked too soon, have to get on,
things to do, places to be

it’s having a sale, clearing all stock; the sentinels stand impassive
to all find, impassive to all loss, hooded eyes on somefaraway beach;
for old times’ sake I pick some up, figures reaching stanceofopera out of panel,
maybe a sixth issue, maybe an intertextual fanzine, avoid the modern
too defined in detail, too static in marque,

and come away with stash held to heart, out
into the bustle busily in all direction, weak indication and giant message
I’ll work my way uphill by quiet sidestreet past high walls holding sycamores and
bay windows over the river home to catalogue my finds like a labyrinth and
plot their weave like a stanza

… in dreams

journey-into-mystery-logo

 

 

 

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

anxiety & searching wormhole: pocket
black & shops wormhole: the silent night of the Batman
childhood & life wormhole: alighted
comics wormhole: ah … // oh … // meanwhile … // … // tha ya ta …
doing & dream & lifetimes wormhole: comfy
doors wormhole: hello, luvvey, do you want a cup of tea?
Edward Hopper wormhole: El Palacio, 1946
eyes wormhole: Lapping Reflections [Deep Within Waters] – snow
grey & morning & Plumstead & shadow & sky & streets wormhole: faintly apricot air?
lemon wormhole: 1967
moon wormhole: the too big moon
path wormhole: Clea
power wormhole: the skyline
smell wormhole: 1967
society wormhole: this sodden land
Thames wormhole: time
walls wormhole: familiasyncopation
windows wormhole: open window
Woolwich wormhole: up on the hill
writing wormhole: writing: // in turn

 

transmuted

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david-face

                test the stone:
                where granular
                where sharp
                how weighty
                when peaked
                where settled

                take the cold
                chisel offered
                here offered
                there suspend
                the mallet
                and swing its ready weight

                then shuck the
                cap and scallop
                the flank and
                chip the eye to
                smooth the
                look then cut

                the reach and
                crack the step
                and round
                the corner to
                ripple the abs
                then clear the

                dust to stand
                resplendent
                reaching with a thousand arms
                or sitting
                tight with bristling sword
                transmuted

 

manjushri-in-sky
1000-arm-chenrezig-statue

 

Bodhisattacharyavatara by Shantideva, I-10:nothing lost; everything gained

 

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

compassion wormhole: moment
Shantideva wormhole: writing: // in turn
stone wormhole: embodying

 

faintly apricot air?

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                why tarmac the whole street wide
                for one bicycle uphill and one

                careful walker down (hand in pocket
                no necktie), the trimmed-back trees

                planted along the kerb edge marking
                curved progress, marking the ends

                of terrace or maybe containing the
                wide grey sky over Shooters Hill that

                delivers a half past ten morning to the
                Borough; thinks the man by the sole

                streetlight leaning back on his cane
                in the shadow of the faintly apricot air?

 

ennis-road

 

 

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

air wormhole: Lapping Reflections [Deep Within Waters] – intemperance
apricot wormhole: the skyline
grey wormhole: industrial estate
morning wormhole: The Boats of Vallisneria by Michael J Redford – Follow Your Nose
Plumstead wormhole: like ink – poewieview #23
shadow wormhole: the silent night of the Batman
sky & streets & trees wormhole: open window
streetlight wormhole: passing below
walking wormhole: to allow / passage

 

writing: // in turn

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                writing:

                to the extent
                that I brush

                with warp and
                with weft with

                light and with
                crepuscule with

                sight and with
                love may any

                lost sibling
                and all of my

                mothers of
                equal humour

                as we have
                shared breathe

                awhile together
                in turn

 

Bodhisattvacharyavatara chapter I, verse 3; IF we are reborn, for each rebirth we would need a mother to give that birth to us and to bring us up; if we have had former rebirths without beginning, we have had infinite mothers – good, bad and indifferent; were ARE all these former mothers now …?; and what has this to do with writing (or any other creative endeavour)?

 

 

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

breathing wormhole: 1966
light & writing wormhole: the silent night of the Batman
love wormhole: ah … // oh … // meanwhile … // … // tha ya ta …
Shantideva wormhole: passersby

 

open window

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                open window

                in the quiet street
                sun shone against
                the sides of houses

                and began to melt
                the dust of snow,
                at length,

                soft steps pass –
                foot-scrape and
                trouser-scuff – then

                cough once twice
                in upper voice
                down the houses

                and it was only then
                that the birds called
                in different ways

                in different trees and
                all of which echoed
                down the blue blue sky

 

 

 

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

birds wormhole: Is There / Life on Mars? – poewieview #32
birdsong wormhole: relief
blue & quiet & sky & sound & windows wormhole: the silent night of the Batman
echo wormhole: this aching // and spacious dichotomy
open wormhole: fine
passing wormhole: to allow / passage
snow wormhole: Lapping Reflections [Deep Within Waters] – snow
streets wormhole: familiasyncopation
sun wormhole: 1964
time wormhole: alighted
trees wormhole: The Boats of Vallisneria by Michael J Redford – Follow Your Nose