Not Tonight

One hundred years of solitude, within one day,
between four walls.

The ever-returning thoughts of failure;
                                        red to ochre
bloodstains all over the wall,

then the one memory that broke your fall
returns
                                       as the pale shimmer
of a phosphorescent ghost…

No,

not tonight.

Multitudes stand in my mind*

Behind the eyes,
                where multitudes abide,
a mind decides to obey strange instructions:

                thoughts
bloom like fruit & fall,
one by one;

                    some
return to the earth to become new life
while others, for reasons unknown,
decay slowly
& grow into nothing but waste.

Swarms of contradictory thoughts
grow thorns:

will beauty persist
when feelings no longer exist?

If I claim you've misunderstood me
would you know what I mean?

& why write a poem

                    no one will read?

*Credo – Robinson Jeffers

Writing

You want to put the barrel of the gun in their mouth,
to stop the noise drowning the music out;

in thrall to the curvatures described by birds in flight
& feelings inscribed in the silver-mirror light,

you want a language defiant of time:

                                    indelible lines,
chords of memory
                                    transcendental & sublime;

the contingencies of life unified
into
    one
        single

                song.

You want what you cannot have:

an abstract/visceral expression of all that

unknowable,
                                    ephemeral

sound enclosed within the bone
where the brain sits
& compels you to this
                                    futile release,
knowing that we never can understand…

                                    but that it doesn’t matter,
                                 
so long as the song is as beautiful as you.