Darkening sky

How the sky tried to turn black but the cloud thinned
Leaving a dull yellow ochre,  lightening slowly
To cream
A black cat leaped onto the fence
I think he’s sleeping here
But he never shows me his face
He runs as if a banger has gone off behind him
As if he’s going to take off like an aeroplane
He hides in the dark green shade
The honeysuckle chuckles, wishes to see more
The wrens ignore him from their holly tree
Too prickly for domestic cats

We call it love

I run my fingers tentatively down your cheek,

asking you a question

with my eyes.

looking at each other,

you touch me too.

This is my skin
my boundary.

Yours is thicker,
like rubber.

I run my fingers down your chin.
what is this little bone?
I like it.

I like your skin

I like your bones.

I like you.

you please me.
you are tasty.
I like your taste,

your skin,your eyelids.

I like your eye here,
and your other eye .

Nice one!

I like the hair on your head.
May I touch your hair?
do you like hair?
Hair makes me laugh.

I have a fondness for laughing.
I love to laugh.

I enjoy laughter
I love your laughter.
If not, smiling is good also.
Or a gleam in the eyes,
showing the inside smile,
the smiling heart.

I like your inside,
Outside
and possibly
your backside.
your upside and your downside.
your side sides.

I snuggle you all around with soft wool.
I knit you into my scarf.
I’ll have to wear you round my neck now!

How unusual
How flexible.
How charming.
How alarming

How creative
How interesting.

What an idea!
what a notion

but you are too big for me to knit
So I’ll just touch your hand
with my fingers.
and you touch my hand
with your fingers.

What good hands we have
with such fingers.

fingers are for touch.
fingers are keen to touch.
I like touch.

what would we do
without fingers?

I like your skin.
skin is good
We love skin
We love.

 

I want skin to be ours
and yours
is mine
and mine
is yours

where is the edge of the world?
skin has no end
it’s infinity
au naturel.
what order!
what design!
What wonder.
what awe.
where is the world’s skin?

tenderly we touch the world
as the world embraces us.

We call it love.
Love.

We call it love

Fuzzy numbers

In calculus we find mysterious forms
Minute numbers disappear,return
Zero is not nothing, but a cloud
Of motes that dance in sun or disappear
Fuzzy logic too has mystery
The truth says nothing is mere black or white
Just more or less and these may overlap
Dissolving into clouds upon a map
Numbers have no feelings but make form
I once saw them moving, patterned, in my dreams
Golden letters telling me the way
The truth is often very hard to see
Like those tiny half alive mind dots
Flying through our minds like dust flies in the sun

Dreams dangle  like stringed balloons

Black against light sky
Bright flowers blown ; bare branches now
Reach  beseechingly.

Reluctant sun hangs
Sending thin light  and pinkness
To clouds sleek as  cats

Now paling, blue grey,
I see mauve dying into dark
Night sky edges in

The  blackness awaits;
Dreams dangle  like stringed balloons
A new born gurgles

How full the holly!
Forsythia large and darker,
Birds shelter  wisely

My hair floated so far out

While we were walking  by the Oxford Canal
He told me it is illegal
To look through a woman’s bedroom window

I tried to jump off the bus
His restraining hand
Made me fall

I was too shy to say
I wanted a pee
I broke up with him
It was  the juice
Of criminal desire

He said he had a car
But I

Had claustrophobia
Otherwise I’d not be here 

My hair floated so far out
I fished up
You

My hip bones stuck out
Like two sharp knives
Like the cliffs at West Bay
I was very light
Even had a flame

I did not know I was desirable
Like a semi detached house
But eventually
I got it.
I mean you

 

 

Let your lips meet gently

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Photo by Mike Flemming copyright



Let your lips meet gently,
the top one resting against the lower,
touching with tenderness
your own skin to skin.

Forefinger propped on chin,
I let the others dangle,
like leaves on a branch;
how softly gravity tugs them downwards.

Let heart beat quietly,slowly
as the blood circulates
carrying its music,
a river,
following the path of least resistance.

How the blood vessels receive willingly this flow,
touching it kindly as with tiny open fingers,
helping and being helped.

How the hair on the head
floats
on the breeze,
like tentacles of an octopus
waving goodbye.

Top eyelid loves the lower one;
as we blink they touch
like lovers kissing swiftly
behind a tree.

and how the light comes in
we see a world.
[mine may not be yours,]
but the blink of my eyelid
sends waves through the air,
so we’re all touching and being touched,
lips kissing each other,
kiss all living creatures.

skin to skin.
air to air.

And inside us,the rich darkness
of creative night
transforms,in turn,
these touches
into dreams.

We wounded hide away

10363756_491792187620581_3914824934932227777_n (1)If I could see your heart and soul and know your feelings past 
 and if you knew mine
 we could   guess why our expectations go so wrong
 because at that moment what was said seemed right but looked at from a wider perspective 
Some  words we said were  errors
or at least not expressed in a way that communicated what we really  meant….
And how painful it is to hurt a beloved person…
Beloved…….I don’t believe you after the cruel you wrote…….
this is the confusion of the human condition…
when fear for a  time eclipses the  warm sun of love
when everything seems dark and  one can only wish to hide away.
…… to protect others from knowing……….
yet the message they get does not say that  the intention………
to protect them and it seems like a total rejection…..
I’m not good enough for you……
I don’t want to hurt you.
Don’t hurt me.
Yet the eclipse will end the sun will shine again………
 and it gives us compassion for others ……….
We don’t take an eclipse personally…………
but with people………………… it’s hard not to do so……
 yet there’s so much we don’t know……… or can’t know
so trust is all we can do….
trust what we once saw………….
and take down the barbed wire we put around our hearts………
 let ourselves be touched and touch.
 When words are not enough…………
we have a rich silence….
 the gaps between the words can say so much.
……to those gifted with understanding
When words refuse to come…….. 
we can share our silence ………
and keep it empty not full of dread or images of fear
until words begin to flow…
like tears.. welcome after a drought,,,,,,
when  our  words hide…. we will find them………….
so much is unknown…………….. we can’t know………
and past losses and rejections   haunt us………
filling the pregnant space with pain.
Yet words can comfort too…console, c
caress,
make communion possible

….words………….
they are all we have…… we‘ ll make them enough somehow.
…..learn their ways and how to use them to touch gently the other’s heart.
……and show, and share our love
………….not use them as a sword…………..
 use them with care….to show care,,,,to show love..
.and regret our faults and failings … but not attacking ourselves cruelly
 stop punishing ourselves….~
have mercy on ourselves 
Have mercy on others…..
We are all vulnerable
We  may miss so much because we are afraid
Wounds can heal,will heal

Have mercy
Accept the pain until we are healed
Then we start again

When my voice trembles  

 

When words no longer work

wonder

wish

want

When words won’t come

compensate

contrive

When my voice breaks

snaps

sunders

strains

When I want to talk

touch

tenderly

towards

But you are not able

about

abandoned

absent

You are no longer

listening

live

longing

When I need to find a meaning

In the shape

form

structure

But I ‘m stranded

Stuck

Sucked under

Swallowed

Then I reach out to you

I want your touch

tenderness

tranquillity

temerity

Sometimes words don’t seem enough

endless

empty

emotive

ejaculatory

Yet words can console

conjure

quilt

charm

captivate

cover.

Stretch out your hand

across the emptiness

and touch me with your fingers

friendship

faithfulness

forgiveness

frailty

fever

touch my heart with words

and I will hope

expect

await

be grateful

grave

garbed in joy

When words don’t feel enough

When all we want is touch

Or to see

sigh

sob

sing

Words can be shaped

changed

contorted

controlled

challenged

Words are all we have

To make us love

To make us live

To make us alive

To make us sing

To make us stand up

To console,words may be

Enough

I’m incontinent, you are in Europe

 

61826877_10219266165308068_4340691161350930432_n

When I found your photograph on the floor
I wrote a poem about it
My sister says, pick up all those photos
Where have they come from?
I say,I don’t know
Maybe I knocked down a folder
 I am clumsy
I write two more poems while she feeds me Belgian apple tarts
She tells me how she fell over in a dark  field in Germany
Her foot went into a hole
There were no lights
They both fell down so she had hysterics
I only had one glass of wine!
She laughed all the way  back to the campsite
And then she fell into laughing  so much
I could hear her here in London
So I got hysterics as  well
That’s genes for you!
I’m still laughing,
They came here on their bicycles
Not dead yet
That’s their trip before Brexit
You never know whether they will start to kill Britons for messing up the entire Continent
BTW I am incontinent

 

I wanted  nothing, all was in its place

Gazing at the trees touched me with grace
My eyes receptive ,mind so still and pure
I wanted  nothing more, no list, no place

Would I dare enjoy a human face
To see the lines of suffering long endured?
Gazing at the your eyes touched me with grace

All the anxious details steal our space.
 We cannot gaze afflicted and allured.
 I wanted  nothing more, no wish, no place

If we  lose ourselves, become engrossed
We gaze with joy ,with colour we’re imbued
Gazing at the trees ,oh green their grace

The  dignity of  art is unimposed
Majestic in its heart, we take our cue
Then want no more, our wish dissolves, exposed

Lying on the earth so warm. so new
I  fertilised, delight in  being you.
Gazing at the trees my heart was graced
I wanted  nothing, all was in its place

Needs are simpler then we imagine.

Anxiety is the price of life.

But don’t pay over the top.

Calmness is good at most times.
Dread is a bad friend.

Exploring nature soothes the soul
For what are we but part of it?

Gentle music helps the mind
How ever we do it,
Listening is a kindness to ourselves

Ink is the friend of the writer.
Judgment is another one.

Kindness is essential to the good life.
Lessons are available daily.

Money is necessary but not sufficient for happiness.
Needs are simpler then we imagine.

Oxygen is good for the brain.
Prayer is good for the mind.

Quality is hard to judge quickly.
Rest is often a good idea.

Tension inhibits ideas.
Work should involve play.

X- rated films are optional
Yes…You are a valuable person.

Z is the final letter
And life is an Art

And we find it,shall we say,satisfactory

6636107_f520
I see a haze of hair on your head
like the softness of just opening leaf buds in spring.
The chemo is over,and you wait relieved and letting that
take you for a while before you start to face the next stage.
Will your Spring turn to a warm enchanting Summer
or has the cancer,as they say “spread.”
Just for now,you’re in that lull
so in three weeks time you will not be
arriving for another session of drugs
and days of sickness.I see the light fuzz which reminds me
of how the cat’s fur grew back after her surgery
and she,being unable to reflect or question,
leapt from the fence top onto next door’s kitchen roof;
no thought in her mind of stitches breaking.
How beautifully the patterned fur returned
and the vulnerable skin was covered again.
Oh,to look into those eyes and see you dream
about mice that live behind the shed
and how you sat watching for hours
and how you were alive till the very last moment.
Then , all of a sudden,you were gone.

Pray it will not be so for ,the fragile,loving human
now waiting and living,hoping for what you took for granted…
a  “normal” life span Or maybe just three quarters of one
would be satisfactory;would be a beneficence
such as trees feel when the sap turns and begins to flow back.
bringing life out of the darkness of earth and soil.
And another Summer comes at the right time
and we find it,shall we say,satisfactory.

Courtesy is everlasting

since i lost you i have lost
the keys to my heart
the front door key
my phone
and my money

now all i have is a large tube of ibuprofen gel max strength
and some feathers from the tail of a baby wood pigeon
that flew into our house when i left the back door open

maybe i need better boundaries
closed doors
and windows

the wood pigeon was so strong its agitation rocked the front door like a thundergod
like you,it did not realise
there are easier ways to leave
than smashing through glass
leaving shards to pierce my heart
not to mention my feet

become a better leaver
have mercy on those other lovers
for charm wears thin but courtesy is everlasting
like love itself

I’d be afraid of  a nuclear accident in my chest

She thought she’d like to be a poet
Calculating her vocabulary was ironic
She wrote free verse in stanzas three lines long
With a short intermission
She learned innocent  and good people
Attract the Evil and that even people who have suffered
Are not less susceptible to wanting power or worship
She learned idolatry is rampant  in men of power
“Men” is naturally inclusive
As you will know if you went to Eton
Or even to Mass in 1956
Why would I want Jesus’s soul even if he is God?
I’d be afraid of  a nuclear accident in my chest
There’s danger around the sacred,we need to know
Satan did have the best lines
Jesus did not answer the questions
We had no right to ask.
I find it’s useful to work with abstract concepts
Otherwise I might suffer too much
Whatever “too much” is
It could be epsilon or delta, you know what I mean?
Isaac Newton.Mercury.The dentist.
Leibniz’ dots.Whatever

How the blood vessels receive willingly this flow

Let your lips meet gently,
The top one resting against the lower,
Touching with tenderness
Your own skin to skin.
Forefinger propped on chin,
I let the others dangle,
like leaves on a branch;
softly gravity tugs them downwards.
Let heart beat quietly, slowly
As the blood circulates
carrying its music,
a river,
following the path of least resistance.
How the blood vessels receive willingly this flow,
touching it kindly as with tiny open fingers,
helping and being helped.
How the hair on the head
Floats on the breeze,
Like tentacles of an octopus
Waving goodbye.
Top eyelid loves the lower one;
as we blink they touch
like lovers kissing swiftly
behind a tree.
and how the light comes in
we see a world.
[mine may not be yours,]
but the blink of my eyelid
sends waves through the air,
so we’re all touching and being touched,
lips kissing each other,
kiss all living creatures.
skin to skin.
air to air.
And inside us, the rich darkness
Of creative night
transforms, in turn,
these touches
into dreams.

Inventing logic and drowning under irrational numbers

‘Algebra’ is of Arabic derivation. It comes from title of the justly famous ninth century Arabic mathematical text ‘al-jebr w’almuquabala ‘by Mohammed ibn Musa Al-Khowarizmi of Baghdad and Damascus.

Have you never wondered about algebra
The Greeks are famed for genius  in the bath
Inventing logic and drowning under irrational numbers
Was it not Euclid who dominated your adolescence with his theorems
Those isosceles triangles, the very name chosen by the scholars of their age?
Those  strange numbers pi and e, the square root of 2 sent them running into conic sections
Straight lines and perfect forms.
Until Descartes with his fine drawn dramas of separation
Took the shape of geometry and rewrote it in abstract algebra
Unthinkable to the ghost of Archimedes with his sling and pendulum
The step into the higher realm left us grieving for our diagrams
And children wondering what the hell is x when it’s at home
‘al-jebr w’almuquabala”
Sacked Constaninople, now Istanbul, libraries looted as ideas ran like electronic rabbits
Up the spine of Europe,like giant fleas on LSD, like the manic humans we are on our dose of screens
Suddenly dimensions could be 4,5, 6… a million who could define a  limit?
Potent startled numbers shot out of fireworks, out of atom bombs, like   idiot stars
And the Universe exploded into God’s eye; a golden kite;  infinite attachments
Set fire to fields and borders as soldiers vainly shot the people they imagined
Were to blame.
If only we  didn’t know that there are no limits to our imagination
We could easily have lived  and died  bored into sanity by those diagrams
Flaunted by teachers, ignorant believers in hard facts
The whole world’s a fantasy, good or bad, algebra is the thrill up your spine
The hammer on your head
The beauty of the pattern  multiplying on invisible needles like God’s fairisle shawl
Tossed into the heavens and hanging forever, full of stars and  holes
Some black

s. On the last train,Warsaw to Moscow, [ change Niegoreloje.]

Elena,a baby wrapped in woollen clothes.
On the last train,Warsaw to Moscow,
[ change Niegoreloje.]
1939.Father,mother,brother
You passed through the Arctic Wastes of life.
Still as if travelling on a train
To an impossibly far destination.
As you left the German Army crashed into Poland
Lost,your aunts
Your cousins.
Your culture.
How does God select the damned?
You had your own baby,here in England,
Not lost like all those others.
Your father died by his own hand,
The hand of history;
The fingers twitching,
Not sure where to point.
Then settling into frozen grief
A sculpture only your mother saw.
You saw too,Elena.
You always saw,though you can’t remember;
The long journey,your mother’s breast,
Your father’s silence.
Only the dead know that silence.
Only the dead weep
With the rocks and stones .
And the ice in each eye
Fell like snow down your cheeks
As you held your own infant.
Warsaw to Moscow,
Moscow to Jerusalem.
Always journeying
Looking for what they can never find:
The home they left behind
The presence of the dead
Lying in gaunt heaps
Like rubbish
Your aunts, Elena.
Your cousins.
You never knew them.
But there’s a hole in your mind
Through which the Polish wind forever blows

This is not it

Impossible to move on because
Between any two numbers
There are infinitely many other numbers.
Time does not consist of equal increments
I saw the car fast moving towards me
And time slowed down, it was ten minutes
Before it hit me.
Elegantly I flew  into the air, second by  infinitely long second
Down below I saw life on a huge TV Screen
I was no longer there.I saw a Hand turning a wheel
Clockwork TV, I knew it.
I was flying orthogonally to the earth
I had a new perspective.No fear
A calm and endless peace held me.
Gravity interfered.Thin as I was,
I was not infinitesimal
Otherwise, I would never have come back
All I knew is, this is not it.
The tortoise won the race.