poetic dichotomy

I rescued a wasp from near certain death at my own hands
– an arbitrary spur of the moment act of compassion
which changed nothing other than my own perception of life
– saved me dealing with the murderous taste of contrition.

Henry Alberto was the eldest son of a family from El Salvador
– determined to finish school he refused to join the local gangs
but they came for him after his graduation and 18th birthday
– shot him dead in retribution all within the same ghastly week.

I could have swatted the wasp and left its body to whither
– annoying buzzing unpredictable stinging nuisance that it was
and besides, there will always be another to take its place
– this random act of killing is disturbingly too easy.

Luis Padillo was a Navy chaplain caught up in rebellious carnage
– as sniper bullets flew in Venezuela he tended to the dying
selflessly risking his own life to offer soldiers the last rites
– death is the choice of the devil in our subconscious.

I took a soft cloth and trapped the wasp against the window
– the power of the executioner, finger on the trigger,
resisting the urge to squeeze the living juices from its body
– hostage released on the whim of the freedom giver.

Henry Alberto’s mother cradles the photo of her dead son
– overwhelming grief consumes her troubled refugee existence.
Father Luis Padillo may or may not have ended his days in Florida
– I have no idea how we should end this deathly poetic dichotomy.

PicMonkey Collage2

(two images that came my way this week – The iconic Priest and the Dying Soldier by Héctor Rondón Lovera from 1962 / Henry Alberto photographed on his graduation day and held by his mother Juana, taken by Patrick Tombola for a Sunday Times magazine article about Central American migrants fleeing poverty and gang violence to Mexico and, with luck, America).

 

retreating

retreating

(ooh a little darker. Those moments when the pitch black tunnel of self-doubt opens its ugly jaws and begs you to enter and be damned but you fight back and say no! It might only last a moment, it might last some a lifetime. I had half a mad gothic mind on Mervyn Peake’s Gormenghast novels. Steerpike, Flay, Swelter, Barquentine, Fuchsia. Haunting their way through the castle story en route to their individual tragic endings).

our ancestral sunrise

golden rays of sunlight fill our eyes
every newborn sunrise from the dawn of time
captured in the blinking flick of a lens
time immemorial.     shuttershocked.
a video framed evolutionary existence
encapsulated in this blood beat gaze
primordial.     prehistorized.     passing.

a journey back and a glance forward
every stillborn sunrise from the dawn of time
eroded by the wash of infant tears
blushed naked fear.     photosnapped.
a moving mastery of previous lives
ancestors suspended in a torsioned vacuum
floating.     familiar.     future famished.

place your hand in mine and feel the warmth
every burning sunrise from the dawn of time
branded in the dna of chromosomed memories
double helixed.     magnetic resonanced.
an x-rayed nuclearoid double vision
twisted on a tendon thread of apprehension
spectre sacrificed.     ghostly galleried.

we move onward each day never knowing why
every clouded sunrise from the dawn of time
masked in the blinded misunderstandings of man
war torn.      bastard birthed.     heartbroken.
what lies beyond our sunlit eyes?
what golden rays fill our brilliant minds?
eternally everlasting.     understanding nothing.

ancestral sunrise

(sometimes I wake up with a line in my head repeating over and over and then another and another and I have no idea where each line will take me but I have to jump out of bed and crank up the lappy and take the journey if only to find out where and why and whatever. It doesn’t matter that it makes no sense at all or will never change the world one iota or even be widely read. A friend recently told me: appreciate what you do with this mangled stepchild we all dub poetry. Ha! I love his words and mind and inspired whackery. My cursor arrowed finger hovers over the publish button afraid to let this one go. Click. Gone. Published:)

fever trail

his fever followed you everywhere

hot sweating on your scented trail
along the dried up gulches and riverbeds
between haze stolen mountains and eagle nests
down wild beast trails through river forests

hunting     grasping     future fishing
hurling vapid words into cliffside caverns
watching     waiting     they fall into silence

aborted echoes of long remembered dreams
fractured     splintered     headshot through
like every buffalo slaughtered on every prairie
like every severed horn piled high for the hunter’s glory

the shattered highway cuts through the turgid night
bisected by your starlit brilliance
two-fingered by your opened-leg malevolence
photographed     pornographed     thermographed

always hoping to catch and blind poker you
shackled     bound     all to his famished self
a wild dog gnashing ripping flesh from bone
stalked     snatched     blood-dripped sand

gloating over his prized possession
his hand smothers your gaping mouth
howls vent and scorn over your battered body
dissolving in a muddied pool of stagnated fury

he gasps     chokes back the grief     turns
follows his fevered trail everywhere
sweating your scented temptation

poisoned without you
poisoned with you
poisoned in you
poisoned you

reward

(playing with imagery, mixing up the here and now with the bruised and burnished past, battlefields and seared landscapes, scars and shallow graves – nothing is sacred or lost).

Hello You

I wonder who you are
why you come here
to share your soul and
spill your thoughts
into all these little boxes.

We are both so alike
yet with disparate lives
miles apart only
internet connected
through cabled wires.

I read your bio
what you choose to tell me
and make up the rest
fill in the blanks
pretend we’re old friends.

Where are you in this world?
I want to imagine your view
see what only you can see
when you write your words
on your laptop or phone.

Won’t you invite me there?
take me by the hand and show me
all that means so much to you
let me understand the why of your mind
and share some precious time.

One lifetime seems not enough
to put these words into all their many
convoluted combinations
to make sense of the turmoil in our heads
and make peace with one another.

We should meet up and say hello you
so nice to meet you and
have a nice day
it’s been fun
I love you.

Maybe then in this time and space
this world would be in better shape
if we all just hugged and said hello
and understood each other’s woes
all hatred laid to waste.

Anyways I’ve rambled on
you must think I’m daft
my head all wrong
it’s just reaching out
that’s all.

IMG_20160523_132100

(original artist unknown. From a display on Worthing pier May 2016, West Sussex, UK. Photograph by Colin Hill. With this new blog site I promised myself to only post new writing but this piece seemed to fit nicely with my previous poem our place and was written not so very long ago on 12th June 2016. I was posting on a poetry site and wondering who all the other contributors were, where they lived, their lives and wouldn’t it be fun to meet up and share a beer or maybe more. It developed from there into more of a peace poem hence the link back to our place. And maybe some wishful thinking that on my forthcoming US trip I could actually meet some of these fellow poets. But alas, no invitations were forthcoming).

 

our place

we need to come a little closer
a little closer even still
understand what we are saying
the words    the meanings
the wherewithal.

we need to talk a little softer
whispers rather than shouts
understand our brothers and sisters
their cultures    beliefs
what makes them laugh out loud.

we need some more compassion
holding hands not dropping bombs
understand the fallout damage
in our minds    our hearts
our children’s wounds.

we need a new revolution
in a world that sets us free
understand our future evolution
peace    love    and unity
a lasting hope for you and me.

IMG_5_BURST201605231209562

(original artist unknown. From a display on Worthing pier May 2016, West Sussex, UK. Photograph by Colin Hill. I seem to have lost my thread of connections between posts and poems and lost myself in peace poetry. I guess the world needs some more of that right now. Where are all those 60’s poets when you need them most? Make love not war! Bread not bombs! Give peace a chance!)