Posts tagged ‘ancient’

18/09/2013

First Born

 

Before the writing on the rock,

Had scratched the miracles away,

Before the clay had stamped its songs,

Before creation raised the seas,

 

Before the ignorance of Greece,

Before Tibetan chants of death,

Before the worthless wars of Rome,

Before the Dreamtime thought to dream.

 

A child began its cry for life,

Like every other cry at night.

Her cries rebounded through the hills,

And echoed up beyond the skies.

 

Her father had a cheating mind.

Her mother screamed and broke the ground.

 

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04/08/2013

The Letter Bird of Recurring Nightmares

 

I knew in sleep the beast would come,

And so I stayed awake too late.

My forest village lived to fear

My nightmares, clawing from their skies.

 

Beyond the lights of round-hut fires,

The Letter Bird had wasted worlds,

And screamed and stalked and hawked its prey.

It ripped at meat with metal beak.

 

They waited, huddled, through the night.

They heard its wings. I tried to wake,

And hoped, if not, their walls would hold,

And keep the Letter Bird at bay.

 

I rarely woke before it claimed

Another victim from my world.

 

 

for the prompt “Childhood Dreams” put up by

mindlovemisery link here… CLICKY

 

31/07/2013

Suburban Sylph of Crying Owls (video poem)

 

Suburban Sylph of Crying Owls is a video poem for thecheesewolf (aka Gavin Jones)’s poem of the same name. This video poem features the artwork of Carine Brosse.

 
video poem copyright Gavin Jones 2013

26/01/2013

Circling Wycoller (Walk No. 9)

 

The moors are weighted with this rain.

Another ridge of peat is lain.

The curlews haunt the hills and wail.

The moors are closing round the dale.

 

The hamlet, old as language, turns

Its back on changing thoughts and forms.

Along the beck the pathways creep:

The gritstone pavements, rutted deep.

 

The mansion house, a hollowed shell,

Where spirit fires are burning still,

And owls can echo history’s cries,

Beneath the towering summer skies.

 

The valley sits above its pasts:

A flick of dust which cannot last.

 

 

08/01/2013

Suburban Sylph of Crying Owls

 

The cry which stripped the street away,

Which left the ancient marsh to rise,

And claimed the gardens for the pine,

Lets loose the wolves and bears of old.

 

A scream the soul of night itself,

Which stretched the forest, coast to coast.

Inhuman land beneath the moon,

Unused to axe, to fear, to smoke.

 

And then up close: the clack of beak.

A yard or so: the scratching claws.

A foot and less: near silent whisps,

Of wings so soft they make no breath.

 

And last I hear the heart and pulse,

And feel nocturnal howlings rise.

 

 

29/11/2012

The Ancient Beech

 

The ancient beech was born in fire,

And married twice to priestly kings.

Its bark was burnt and deeply scarred.

Its leaves poured light and raised the earth.

 

The mast around was stained with blood,

And matted thick with offered hair.

A thousand years the beech had grown,

It touched the sun and stroked the moon.

 

Its roots had spread beyond the wood,

Beneath the charcoal burner’s house,

Beneath the gardens, streets and towns,

And out beneath the mythless world.

 

The ancient beech was lost to truth:

Was married twice, and twice forgot.

14/11/2012

Cairngorm Garden (Abernethy Forest)

 

The pines are silent, weighed with snows,

All needle black and evening rose.

The days mere stars between the nights

Beneath the trees it’s rarely light.

 

Aurora haunted foxes cross

The lichens crisp and sphagnum moss,

They scent the age-old meeting sights:

Another generation fights.

 

It’s been a heavy day up high,

And buntings flitter from the sky:

A scattered dance of fawn and white,

Their misting calls of mountain heights.

 

This shadow garden deep in frost:

Its ancient ways and tracks are lost.

22/05/2012

“Why do Monsters Cease?”

 

The town wore dust as some wear skies,

Its buildings barely stood on props.

The crumbling had been centuries long.

A rootless people drifted through.

 

Around the town the maquis spread

Obscuring tablets pressed with tales,

And ancient bricks which burnt and broke:

The merest trace of palace walls.

 

Its stories scattered through the world,

With sails for wings and widening eyes.

They drifted off beyond the earth,

Became a breath, became a fear.

 

The truth lies lost beneath the scrub:

A pile of bones reduced to chalk.

 

(The title is from Seneca: Phaedra, 173ff)