'Songs of Love and Hate'
It’s four in the afternoon...
the end of December. Already,
the soft-shoe shuffle of autumn
rustled by me, cocooned in the half-light
of the shed...as yellow as your hair,
and do you still wear a rose in your lapel?
Bulbs, in sacking, clamour to be dug
with that earthy, musty odour of brown.
An errant shower, tap-dances on the roof –
its departure leaves the sky the bluest
of things blue; ‘Famous Blue Raincoat’,
on my mind.
I’m writing you now, just to see if
they get rain, where you are. Here, a
sense of betrayal fugs the air...even so
a kind of rusty richness pervades...the last
of the Red Hot Pokers – summer’s final torch,
as the wilderness gathers in its children.
Virginia creepers – a blaze of bronze
against a wall of oak; dig my hand
into a crumpled paper bag
of crusted corms, and pray to god
snowdrops will drift in, by and by,
like foam on a high spring tide;
haphazardly thrown – to make home
wherever they land.
Sodden vine leaves clog the rake –
smoke from the bonfire, barely blue...
hangs low; suits my mood;
Black Eyed Susans – denuded,
brown stems shudder in dread at the stir
of the wind – under its breath
murmurs an imminent threat of frost.
These are misty, Michaelmas days;
only phantoms remain of familiar
shapes...faces. Apples on gnarled
and twisted limbs hang on to the bitter end...
prey to marauding hornets and wasps – tipsy ,
as I, with too much home-grown cider.
And the blue-print lies in ruins, so
self-pity rears its shameless head, and yet,
surely all things must end, to begin again,
in the grand scheme of things – makes
mice, mountains...and men. Life
is a song...is poetry...is a way