I hear death coming…

I hear death coming

I hear death coming
In the morning half-light.

For a moment the dawn chorus
Fools us all
That it can be forestalled.
But it can’t.

And soon the birdsong thins
To leave a lone bird singing
In an old tree
Against the sky.

I see it coming
As do the friends and family
Gathered.
Not all know why.

They and the shroud of cloud
Drawn heavy across the sky
Will part when it is time
But not before.

For some days now I have smelt
Death in this room
As if the skin and flesh began to turn
Some time ago.

And yesterday I caught sight of your upper thigh
Beneath the streets
Translucent white
Fragile, frail and slight.

I have touched death before
But this time it is coming for sure

I have brushed it and brushed it aside
Through age, agility or luck

But this time it has us cornered
Its breath against my skin.

Death is here now.

I want

I want to catch a train carrying no bags
To walk across the meadow with no shoes.
I want no watch on my wrist
Only the sun to beat to.

I want to sleep when I wish to sleep
And wake when I wake.
And if I should not wake, so be it.
But tomorrow let’s make love and dress and drive and go who knows where.

Turn off the radio,
Put a hammer through the television
Throw that phone and forget all time.

Let’s read no more lines
Let’s heed no lists.
But let’s instead
Write our script.
For tomorrow and the next.

Changing room

Keep your eyes fixed firmly to the wall
Don’t look back
Don’t look around.

How the memory lingers.

Of cheeks pressed hard against cold wet tiles
Of the pools of water swallowing my eyes.
The smell of steam and playing field mud
Sinking deeper into my nostrils until
Choked with sod.

Shirt first then drop your towel
The rest is easy
From that point on.

I hear not
The words about me
But am finely tuned to pitch and sound.

The rustle of shirts and unfolding clothes
Like treacherous feet in snow.

It passes.

Now you can turn around.
And face the crowd.

Facing your way
I found myself through you, and you me.
I am for keeps.

I stripped away the layers of your heart and found truth.
I cherish it.

I discovered a new language for love with you.
I am breathless.

Then I held your hand and our fingers began to talk.
I held you tight.

* *

Today,
I touched your skin and it felt like the first time.

I closed my eyes.
I imagined you.

I opened my eyes.
I caressed you.

At night and at first light, I lay into you.

Facing your way.

Always.

Love breaks over me

Love breaks over us
And pulls us towards the open sea

The sand sifts finely between our toes
Like your untied hair through my fingers.

Fingertips of sun softly stroke my back
And smooth away the fear and loathing I had.

Our hearts see beyond the seagull’s flight
A horizon certain, hand in hand.

The backwash tugs at our ankles
And begs and beckons us to follow.

I look askance at you beneath the sky deepening blue
And air fills my lungs for the first time it seems.

Love breaks over us
And this time we dive beneath its crest.

Summer Storm

We watched the storm as it built from the East
(As you hung washing on the line).

Its golden curls boiled in the setting sun
Atop its grey cloak unfurling in the wind.

Four chargers bearing princely crowns rode alongside
Rearing at the crest of the darkened hillside.

Then turned to chase the land that is eternally theirs,
That goes between day and night.

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