The ladder

I fear  to stand up  tall on this new earth
One hand is on the ground,  my back is bent
Shivering fear, excitement, what’s  this birth?

I climbed , like Wittgenstein, a ladder’s worth
Then threw the ladder down   as my assent
I fear  to stand up  tall on this new earth

Far away, so far, the time of mirth
For sometime a lover I was lent
Shivering fear, excitement, what’s  this birth?

I wonder can I walk ,this step the first
 Love may die and who shall then repent?
I fear  to stand up  tall on this new earth

I see myself in black, the window’s bust
A man climbs out  uncut by accident
Shivering wonder, what allures  such birth?

I see in my mind’s eye  the incident
I  learn to balance  gravity with  sense
I desire  to stand on this new earth
Shivering, wonder, is it birth or curse?

When after death I lie deep in the earth

O happy worm that of  my flesh might eat
When after death I lie in deep in the earth
My bosom,hands and eyes  become your meat

You have no sun as you enjoy your feast
And none is  chosen as we were at birth
O happy worm that of  my flesh might eat

All of us are equal in defeat
None are high or low , what are we worth?
My brain,my hands,my eyes  become worms’ meat

In the soil, we rest  in comfort sweet
Let us all be blessed,God  make no curse
You made the happy worms who   will  us  eat

O  remember the deep  ash from Auschwitz’ heat
The little children killed without Kaddish
Those  hearts ,those hands, those eyes   no worm   could eat

,
Why should we  be satisfied by wish

When  people burn or starve  beside our dish
O Godly worm that of  my flesh might eat
Let my very self  become your meat

Bless the hand that points us past the known

I cannot mend the lamp that we both chose
The top and bottom split when  he fell down
But I can make it look as if it glows

The candle burns, has fragrance of a rose
That takes away my sadness and my frown
I cannot mend the lamp that we both chose

I find it hard to  bear the pain of loss
The concept is  more verbal than it’s noun
But in my home  the candle  brightly glows

In Blythburgh church, a lighted candle  bless
See the painted angels and their crowns!
I  will bear this breakage and its cost

I will get the strength to bear my cross
Oh,haul me, holy one, if I fall down.
Beyond  these lights we sense  the Light of God

Bless the hand that points us past the known
Where each of us must travel, perhaps alone
I cannot mend our lamp that we both chose
I  wander in my grief amongst the low

Love’s victory

Turn back, live again, he asked of me
Do not wander in this darkness anymore
One false step might give death victory

We are each connected to that tree
The sunlit top, the roots hid in earth’s floor
Come back, live again, he asked of me

While we live, we’ll live with dignity
Not scrabbling for the gold in blood and gore
One false step will give death victory

The kindness of the golden light was clear
And left an image in my mind’s deep core
Come back, live your life, he then soothed me

Do not wonder now why you are here
We’re here to live and living shall restore
What our suffering self has found so dear

I had never seen the Light before
Only Christ the Tyger with his roar
Come back, live through pain, he asked of me
One right step will give love victory

Love will need no trick

In my despair I felt that I was stuck
Paralysed by  grief and guilt I failed
By the end I had tried every trick

From prayer unthought to deeps of logic black
My  life, my engine ,juddered off the  rails
I hated God and of “his” Church was  sick

Starving  and alone I was in shock
The death of one I loved   had made me frail
By the end I had tried every trick


I felt  Love’s arms around me,  death was blocked
I knew   this goodness,  why else would I wail?
I   thought I hated God  but Love had struck

Warm and golden light  that  did me hold
Where are you now when Evil has grown bold?
Kind despair  that  made me long time sit
By the end I learned Love needs no trick

Oh, gentle Light

I ‘ll try to get it right just one more time
You did not converse with me in words
You were simply present with your Light

Nowhere did I feel your power and might
You were no eagle, but a little bird
I ‘ll try to get it right just one more time.

Who made our language with its subtle rhymes?
The ancient people  had their well trained Scribes
You were always there,oh gentle Light

You  gave me warmth, you  changed my too fixed sight
A comforter , a Spirit, how describe?
I ‘ll try to get it right a final time.

The agony inside me lost its bite
I wanted to go on, to be alive
You  do not always show your golden Light

We do not know  when we at last arrive
We do not reach this  meeting place by strife
I ‘ve tried to get it right this final time
I never saw such  Gold until that night

He  filled  my ear and  then he caught my eye

I dreamed of my old dentist in the night
He  filled  my ear and  then he caught my eye
I hope he can’t see me without a light

He asked me how I planned to write
I told him I don’t plan but just come by
I dreamed of my old dentist in the night

I felt a little quaint, I was not right
I think I picked the wool with the wrong ply
I hope you can’t see me without a light

I want to knit  lace sweaters  for delight
But there’s no wool shop anywhere hereby
I dreamed of my old dentist in the night

I made a horse shoe patterned jumper tight
My bosom was so big it  made men cry
I hope  they can’t see me without a light

I  reckon that  cheese sandwich made me high
This is  no truth it’s halfway to a lie
I dreamed of my old dentist in the night
I  wish I could see him  by candlelight

I long to see your face just one more time.

I long to see your face just one more time.
I didn’t know that day  would be the last.
I can’t create the real by using rhyme.

You’d  smoke a cigarette  and write some lines
About the mountains that we’d  climbed or  passed
I long to see your face just one more time.

On Ingleborough  we had made designs
But heavy rain came down and we were lost
I can’t create the real by using rhyme.

We turned around as if it were a crime,
For we knew  such decisions have a cost
I long to see your face just one more time.

I teased you  on the muddy  slopes  in mime
I could not speak for I had seen  your ghost
I can’t create the real by using rhyme.

 

In Dent  or  up in Teesdale  will you come?
Or  by  scarred boats in Staithes,  eternal rest?
I long to see your face just one more time.
I can’t create the real by using rhyme.

 

 

 

Sailing like a flower across the sky

I spent my life on books on how to live
Then  when death was near I really did
I saw the little smile on my friend’s face
I saw the shining eyes, the lost embrace
I gathered up these books and threw them out
I wasted time in thought  and curious doubt
Let’s leave our heads alone and use our sense
To hear a bird sing to enthrall his spouse
To see  a swallow dip and fly away\
To see a  little orange butterfly

Sailing like a flower across the sky
The silken skin of children and  their glee

When father stops to  show them the cat’s flea
The smile of mother, her security
Containing all their woe  transformed and free
To  gather in sweet memories  of joy
Noone else can know what  our life ‘s for

One amber eye now opens,mouth a-yawn

Limp with love and joy, the cat plays shawl
As my spouse is writing his new book
With warmth across his shoulders, clawless paws.

Nothing moves except the hand and  tail
Twitching in cat’s dream,miaows rebuke.
Limp in happiness the cat’s a shawl.

Males together,thought and work recalled
I stand in silence as I, greedy,look
Cat across his shoulders,paws and all

Each is real, the creative and its role
A sight creates an image  rich  yet meek.
Relaxed at last the cat play acts a shawl.

One amber eye now opens,mouth a-yawn
To be cat’s mother,I am sole recruit
The elongated cat’s in Newton’s thrall.

The trance breaks up,so I’m alone with doubt.
This empty room is theatre for the mute.
Limp with happiness, the cat still calls
From my love’s dear shoulders, gentle frail

 

 

Now I need to  want to say goodbye

I used to know you loved me by your eyes
Not the eyes  of judgement cruel and  dark
 Yet I need to  learn to say goodbye

Every day  deserted lovers cry
Our eyes grow dim, they lose their living spark
I used to know you loved me by your eyes

You were full of humour, I can’t sigh
Remember swans, the  frozen lake, the park?
Now I need to  want to say goodbye

Like a lark, your soul flew to the sky
Near Studland Bay,  where small birds seem to talk
I used to know you loved me by your eyes

My tears fell like a  curtain from each eye
I could only see you in the dark
Now I need the will to say goodbye

Though not  violent, you have made your mark
We got into that  rhythm when we walked
I used to know you’d  love me till I died
Even after death, I feel you by.

 

Where we slept, my sister oh my child

In our double bed, mi dad had died
Mammy slept w’t baby, a release
Now I slept, mi sister by mi side

A wooden frame, flock mattress where I lied
Making up long stories for mi sis.
In the double bed, owa dad had died

Up the stairs, we smelled the bacon fried
All the food was cloaked with grief and grease
And I slept mi sister by mi side

I was trapped by guilt don’t you deride
I disobeyed mi daddy, now deceased
In the double bed, he thought to die

He punished me, I never even cried
We had no phone to send for the police
Did I sleep mi sister by mi side?

He wore a green tweed jacket and a tie
While his overalls dried hanging underline
In our double bed where daddy died
We kids both slept, my sister, oh my child