Poetry In Motion

My thirteen year old daughter is attempting to teach herself British Sign Language.

I had to share with her a video I found when searching You Tube a few years ago to listen again to THAT song after watching Lord Of The Rings. Annie Lennox’s rendition of ‘Into The West’ is signed in its entirety here. Her voice, accompanied by the graceful hand gestures, is poetry in motion, a beautiful ballet. Enjoy.

 

Paper Stage

In our fiction we have found another meaning,

Persona purified upon the page,

Feeding lines to lovers, deleting where we wish,

Camouflaged emotions, love to rage.

Subterfuge by any other standard,

Masks and costumes donned, let play commence,

Poetry, prose enacted, upon a paper stage,

Imagined intervals to build suspense.

Little drops of us from side to centre,

Courtesies in character full-blown,

Feed the words, imbue them, reality suspend,

Alter-egos populate, seeds sown

From a word or two, our person may be pleasing

Or one dastardly who mocks at every turn,

A subtle slice of sandwich’d, we and he combined,

Embodiment of bits of us, new formed. 

Where Angels Weep

Is it better to be absent when you lie upon a bed,

Presence close beside you, somewhere else inside your head,

Turning all the buttons in the channels of your brain,

Is it better to be all alone when absence causes pain.

Is it better to be silent when walking on the street,

Negating conversations with the lonely that you meet,

Turning face away from fears, frantic running fast,

Is it better to be silent when lonely people pass.

Is it better to be buoyant when spirit urges fall,

To try for more resilience when backed against life’s wall,

Pretending to the lonely heart that silent power wins,

Is it better to be buoyant while you flail to sink or swim.

Is it better to believe in dreams than curse the darkest clouds,

Surpassing all tempestuous with images around,

Fleeing to the hinterlands where dreamers send their prayers,

Is it better to believe in dreams than cry down oaths on never theres.

Is it better to be born a fool that never makes a plan,

Wisdom in the let it be’s instead of better than’s,

Painting pictures of their own while others purchase theirs,

Is it better to be born a fool and peddle varied wares.

Is it better to be born deaf, blind, all senses out of reach,

No touch, no taste, no scents, no sixth, distant from life, speech

Indifferent, heart of stone, oblivious to all,

Is it better to be born senseless than to feel the pain withal.

Is it better to suppress the self when angels beg their need

Though silent on a lonely cloud where usher’d tears fall, bleed,

Dripped upon the bed space where the absent hear, don’t fail,

Is it better to suppress the self when angels weep and wail.

 

Big Bit Beautiful

Recent hist’ry, further back,

Nothing born of chance,

Entwine threads and treasures found,

Conjoined in life’s dance.

Ghosts of words, mem’ries bound,

Ugly turns to dust,

Ethereal, spiritual, one love

In which we trust.

Haunted notes from music box,

Motes that swirl from lid

Raised reveal of velveteen,

Box’d coffin where we hid.

Hand to cover, prised, released,

Hinges rusty creak,

Ballerina, beautiful,

Pirouettes, she speaks,

Seeks the treasure,

Finds and shares,

Gifted girl, soul-gowned,

Energy with him reclaimed,

Twin-tuned from Underground.

 

Random click on open mail,

A moment glimpsed in time,

Comment came from words read there,

Here developed as I find.

Grave reminders, must we all

To humility subserve,

But, building up and strengthening,

Big bits of beautiful, all deserve

A second song from music box,

Reminders when we fall,

Composition, love created,

Biggest beautiful of all.

 

Tuning Senses

See the fire growing fom the ember barely there,

See the flames begin their dance again,

See them feeding oxygen, thirsting on the air,

See them leaping, fire renewed from pain.

See resplendent feathers, reflected in the dance,

See the plumage, see the wings, they spread,

See new life arising from the ashes, sparked of chance,

See the life exhumed, reborn from dead.

Hear the thrum of music, crackling from the pyre,

Hear the mystic voice of phoenix rise,

Hear the heat in visuals scorching from new fire,

Hear the silent message in her cries.

Feel impassioned purpose, senses tuned to glow,

Feel the power pulsing in its name,

Feel the fire of life coursing so we know,

Feel eternal light rebirthed from flame.

 

 

Room 101

Just finished watching Room 101 on telly. I opted for Auld Fartdom.

As far as I’m aware, the origins of Room 101 are from George Orwell’s ‘1984’ where any occupant’s greatest fear was known and used against them to control any perceived rebellious streak.

The TV version, of course, doesn’t focus on fears but on aversions. Tonight a panel of three celebrities got to air their pet-hates which included noisy eaters, women whose toes hang over the end of open-toed shoes, travellers who recline their seats back into your space and kissers with overactive salivary glands. First world problems, I know.

But it got me to wondering about what things turn my stomach or bug me.

And I’m curious about yours.

Straight off, I’ll say one thing I cannot stomach is being in close proximity to someone brushing their teeth. Even my own kids. I’ve done it, of course, but cringed the whole time and designated that a daddy task whenever I could.

I won’t go into the fine details but imagine a scenario where I was forced to witness this enmasse. Last year, a class, new initiative, children all brush their teeth together in class after lunch. I was almost ill being in the same room as that amount of noisy brushing and frothy whitening around the lips. The thought of them all spitting into the sink had me reeling. But, no fears, they just swallowed. That induced a fit of heaving. It took every bit of self-control to remain in the same room as them and the teacher as he counted off two minutes of brushing. No one, as far as I’m concerned, should be compelled to be in the same room as anyone brushing their teeth.

So, what are your aversions? What makes you gag or want to close off the senses?  Or, in the spirit of the original, what really scares you?

((According to my 13 year old, people who turn their eyelids inside out, aubergines (but there’s a reason for that one) and clowns. With her on the clowns and the eyes. I’m responsible for the aubergines.))

Kingdom of Auld Fartdom

I have come to the conclusion that I have now become a tax-paying inhabitant of the kingdom of Auld Fartdom. I have visited its environs from time to time and peeked over the city walls, even ocasionally entering its gates, sometimes shaking my head at what I’ve seen inside. People, old and young and some of indeterminate age, cautiously going through the motions of life or, contrarily, completely knackered by their exertions in the fray.

I’ve always hastily withdrawn from these forays, accepting that some there are who are old before their time and others whose age has caught up with them, lassoed their legs and brought them down with a yeeha!

Lying in state upon my king-sized, coffee at hand, kindle on lap, I’m trying to recollect the last time I really felt like moving myself on a Friday instead of succumbing to end-of-week syndrome. Looks shattered, feels shattered, is shattered, shattered I shall be. Let me be.

I’m thinking back to my youth (pre-marriage and weans) and recalling how I was always first in from work, way before my brothers and sisters. I had first dibs on the boiler and didn’t even think of needing or stopping for coffee or any other sustenance such was my anticipation at the evening ahead. Getting shifted had priority over everything else. Leisurely hours of prepping for a night on the town were punctuated by the sounds of my siblings arguing over who needed access to the shower next. How many times one or other of my brothers would play the self-same trick of pleading an urgent calling for the bathroom, forestalling my sister’s ablutions, only to hear her roaring at them for stealing her towels and toiletries as the emergency apparently required immediate use of the goods laid out.

I would be listening to music, applying makeup, drying my hair, happily distanced from the melee if not the noise. Teachers’ hours were in my favour then.

The school day has changed somewhat, the hours have even altered a bit but not enough to signify the turnaround on my Fridays.

Supposing I had a heavy date lined up with Wolverine’s alter ego I’d be hard pushed to rouse myself with anything approaching the same cheery demeanour.

Want the shower? Have the shower? Need my toiletries? Wire in.

Trying to recollect when exactly it changed is proving elusive too. I still remember three nights out at the weekend in early marriage so not at that point. After kids? I could still have moved myself with gusto but opportunities were limited. Whenever they availed themselves I was like a dog out of trap two. So not then either.

Recent Friday forays into the city have been prepped for with fucks and grumbles at having to be there at a certain time, the inconvenience of getting there and the bigger one of getting home. But I’ve gone and enjoyed it despite myself.

Tonight though, supposing I was offered chauffeur-driven luxury each way, a slap-up meal in between finished off with dancing and a spot of tongue-tangoing with wolfman I’d have to decline.

Because I’ve taken up residence in the royal burgh of Auld Fartdom, just within the walls of the city, very much part of the kingdom and I can see people peeking through the gates. I’m mouthing, ‘fuck off’ at them with the gurniest face I can muster and I think I might like it.

 

One coffee has boosted my reserves and I’m contemplating a glass of red to remove the sound of children’s voices from my day.

If anyone does have a spare limo at the ready I may, with the help of some lubrication, be persuaded to step outside of the city walls for old time’s sake. But you can still have first dibs on the boiler. It’s a combi. Bit like myself on a Friday.

Impact

World keeps right on turning

In spite, not because

Of everything done and said,

Following natural laws.

Impact from external

May just change its course

Devastate, deviate,

Improve where none can force.

Rotational, cyclical,

Dizzying cyclone,

Spinning, spinning, spinning on

World no one may own.