Super-talented children
play on the eternal beach,
building castles and cities
and civilisations and worlds,
anything, everything they want;
and try to keep all and each
out of everyone else’s reach.

Dancing around hand in hand,
they themselves are powdered sand.

The sun shines down
burning them brown.
The sea rolls in
ironing everything
smooth and flat and thin.


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Wandering on through a waste
of perils we have so often faced,
blown by hot winds of desire,
pursued by our own shadows,
touched by the invisible fire,
surrounded by supravisible foes.

From waste to waste.
From oasis to oasis.
And every place is
populated by its demons and its deities,
its hermits and those who say
Life is only a matter of just getting by
and waiting for the lottery in the sky
to rain down its fools’ gold.

Bought and sold.

New debts to pay,
an eternally unbalanced ledger,
totting up, clocking up, clocking out.
Day after day after day.


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The season slides
to wind and showers
and sharp hot sun
(for rare half-hours)
and all the world
lays waste its powers
pursuing what it cannot own.

Then mists and fogs and hazy sunrise
ships’ dull horns and lazy gull cries.

Now blazing heat
(bone dry pails)
sandy feet
single sails.

And thoughts slip in and out of being
just on the edge of almost-seeing.


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It was different in the past.
Especially in the village.

Before you could read
Before there were newspapers
Before there was radio
Before there were telephones
Before there were films
Before there was TV
Before there were computers
Before there were smartphones
Before there was the endless whispering
of global gossip,

You lived mostly where you were:
on the street
in the room
at the market
in the church
in the inn
in the fields.

You lived mostly where you were,
suffered face to face with yourself
and your neighbours.

As you grew older, your Past lengthened
and you began to live in it
with that diminishing group of friends
who lived there too.

Things are different today.
No matter where, untidily,
you park your body
or put it on auto-walk
auto-eat, auto-read, auto-talk,
auto-computer, auto-TV,
you are usually meandering
the surfaces of the earth
or plundering
the mists of cyber-space
and the mysteries
of Imagination’s Daughters,
Past, Present and Future.

Your suffering enshrouds you like the veil
in a premature womb-tomb;
and any way you look at this you fail!

“Hey, hey, hey? Mrs. Robinson?

Hey, hey, hey!”


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In a flat
you think
you could scream yourself to death
and not be heard.
Pressing your cheek
against the cool of the sink.
One breath
upon another breath.
No word
for that.

In a room,
you suffer
inside door,
walls, ceiling, floor.
You could shout,
you could walk out,
it’s not a tomb.

In a crowd,
you might suffer with everyone in,
trade joy with everyone in;
too loud to think alone in.


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The fiery sun burns down
and leaves its reflection
in every bucket of water
and bathing pool.

The real sun has its place
leaves no reflection
in every heart
of every living thing.


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You are at peace
and someone comes,
thoughtless not unkind,
and jogs you with his moment;
demands your recognition,
your admission,
your consent
to his place in your mind.

What do you do?
What harm has he done
to you?
What calm had you won
and no room for him inside?


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On the broken and transcended
the Light shines brightest
having more shadows to contend with

On the dead and transcended
the Light shines clearest,
there is least of all there to contend with

Blessed are the Beatitudes
for they bring rest unto the people.
If any of the people will look
past newspaper platitudes
into a meaningful book.

Blessed are the clear
for their lives are refutations
of the mumble and fumble you hear,
are humble revelations
of a world they’re incredibly near.

Blessed are those who think before they speak
and care not who’s around to hear,
are something more than just another leak
in the human plumbing gear.

Blessed are those who keep their message short,
whose lives say more than anything they’ve taught,
who think straight thoughts.


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So if you see
you’re hanging on a tree
as someone else’s pear,
how did you get there?

Solitary Rose.
How come it doesn’t realise
it’s the one and only?
How come it isn’t lonely?
Or even a little melancholy?

Exemplary Rose!


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Going out there is no other.
Coming back there is no trace.
Though we must love one another,
whose is the beloved’s face?

Start from wherever you wish to,
you cannot end up in a different place.
Scrutinise carefully the mirrors around you,
all that you see is the same old face.

Blame not the mirror for the malformation,
polishing the glass won’t improve the skin.
If you intend a transformation,
smile with a smile that warms from within.


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