Masturbation in the face of banality

I don’t know but I suppose it all
must mean something:

people walk & talk but don’t look,
too much in or out of love with…

what?

I watch while they live &
two birds in the trees wont shut up;
pigeons are fighting
or trying to fuck.

I watch this &
still know nothing.

The wind grows sharp teeth &
greedily devours the trees,
in the static isolation
of our civil jungles,
& forest jails;
 
our vast deserts of furious action.

While weather beaten rocks are washed over
by the noise of conversation:

talk about what we love,
of who we hate & what went wrong
but only one to one.

In groups we speak only of safe & comfortable
things:
weather, banal media &
commodified games,

to distract from the future that awaits
& the present confronting
us all
 
with the face of forces beyond our control.

Derangement

I’ve felt the soft surface of temporal fabric,
watched the world begin to fold
small, then
            smaller &
            smaller…

…organic origami elided
            into water,
rearing over what remained of
what was no longer me.

Electricity began to scream;

nameless incandescence;

sound waves of colour;

cold feathers
folding down,
            down,
                down.
Inside
nothing remained but space & light,
a deep divide
between body & mind.

Quick flicker of panic
as all thoughts plunge into ice…

then it doesn’t matter
what I try to write or
if I write

nothing at all.

Zabbaleen

& like any god
-forsaken thing, I want nothing more
than my breaths
– Ocean Vuong

Signals traverse spines & veins.

Eyes dilate.

Tracing ancient patterns,
twisting sinuous ribbons
of memory
renewed through constant sacrifice
rise:

another performance of terror &
necessity.

Animals survive & others must die,
while through it all light plays majestic games
across the spectacle,

watched over by gods who care nothing for
mercy.

~~~

Here though, there are no gods;
here the wind touches glass & concrete trees
fells greasy cardboard leaves,
plastic carrier bags,
cigarette ends,
empty cans &
people.

~~~

The Gazelle has broken limbs,
has lost it’s noble frame
& the grace of such delicate movements

between jaws, claws, teeth &
brutal muscle;
 
adrenaline,
instinct
& chance.
 
The Gazelle searches for a place to hide,
somewhere to die in peace
before the scavengers arrive
to tear away still-fresh meat
soft with the warmth of life.

Such an ugly fate for a gentle beast.

Just look at the fucking state of it,

watch the blood draining from a dead-eyed dream.

~~~

The Zabbaleen
have been forced to become human garbage.

There are many others like them.

It need not be this way.

Here there are no gods but
mercy could exist, this

makes me ashamed to be human.

What about you?

Momento from the full moon

Once
I loved someone,
in the same way,
& for the same reason
I love the moon:

you don’t need to see it every day,
                to know that you’ll see it again;  
you can’t always see it, but
                you know it’ll always be there…

                    …& then
months became years & those years
became the unnoticed mouldering kiss;
a distance turning stale,
old & cold as the
                empty bed.
                               
So lonely not knowing how to explain
until too late,
& strange to find how changed
the feeling is when found again;

the pain so far away

like the Moon.

The River

Everything moves in the river,
even the stones erode slowly &
disappear.

We are no exception.

If you try becoming a prisoner
in love with their guard, then maybe
existence wont be so hard
but

when you search for the spirit in the bone
be prepared for disappointment:

the sickness is indiscriminate &
it never goes away.

Everything moves through the river,
everything decays.

You are no exception.

Enough

You have a favourite tree in this city,
& the one he hung himself from
is in the same public garden.

You took me there once:
                        2 am.,
we were drunk.

You climbed the trunk & sat on the branch
where he swung
for hours, years ago, until
the grounds-keeper found him in the morning.
& quit their job soon after.

He is always somewhere in your mind,
the memories you want desperately to survive
come flooding back to you sometimes
& the pain in your eyes is unbearable.

So much trauma.

Every year
you plant flowers at the base of the tree.
Every year
you despair as age reminds you again
just how young he was.

So much trauma.

I asked permission
& you let me sit on the branch with you.

Looking down on the ground,
every suicidal thought returned &
I realised I wasn't ready;

                        I wanted
to lay beneath a cherry tree
& bleed, buried beneath fallen blossoms:

no,
I wasn't ready then…

was your friend?

You asked me & the only answer
that I could find
was that some of us need more

than life can provide,
but we search
                    until the searching

becomes too much.

The present absence

A present absence expands & contracts,
hollow at the core as
                    thin thoughts
convinced that words
can poison internal organs
                    collapse
into a pool of stagnant water
where no light survives.

The days
                    fold & fall away
leaving only the faintest trace
of what once
existed…

                grotesque
& never-ending,
a thing somehow still alive, like
                a zombie
convulsing on the floor
in a room
with an unlockable door;
the Will conflicted, torn
between hatred
of daylight & fear of the night
bringing tapeworms beneath the skin:

rip them out, one by one
until the arms are nothing more
than wet ribbons of red;
            tattered remains of flesh
draped across bone.

Then wake up
                    alone
without hope
that this will end the way it always does:

new meds, new promises

& the slow return of memories that always
break your fall;

                    the pale shimmer
of phosphorescent ghosts.

Dancing

Insistent whispers from distant places,
tease & menace;

the hold is held*,
coils then melds, melts & is gone forever.

Solid & insubstantial, all objects
whole & partial
resist or yield,
or stubbornly reveal futility

to be both the cause & death of meaning:

every answer
a more graceful dancer than the question;

                            never ending
tension between existence & being.

It slips away,
                            eternally
within the reach,
of a grip that cannot keep what it holds:

grains of sand in the hands of a creature

who doesn't understand
either…

*Maurice Merleau-Ponty

Alive

Here we’re
            alive.

Here we are as we love & complain,
orgasm & menstruate;
vomit & piss & waste our hate
on the smallest of things.

Here we are
            with or without
mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters;

comrades or enemies;
consumers or revolutionaries*,
            attack or defence,
for or against:

reasons so solid yet insubstantial
at the same time.
 
An accident upon infinite accidents,
so improbable
as to constitute a miracle,

here we’re alive
                to the glorious light:

your life is not a cage, a stage
or a performance,

                it’s just an accident.

You’re alive, & one day you will die

So…laugh until we burst**?

*Those Anarcho Punks Are Mysterious – Against Me!

**Idioteque – Radiohead

Evergreen

With all the inevitability
& perfect frailty
of autumn’s
final fallen leaf

the secret violence of our silence,
stands exposed;

a distance so vast in a space so small.

Every word that once was shared
now hides
with their patterns obscured.

The summer is turning it’s back,
as the wind grows sharp teeth
greedily devouring the trees;
darker mornings, colder evenings.

Will the winter destroy the warmth we need,
or will we find a way to keep our dreams
from fading?

There is still hope,
not every leaf will fall:

some trees are evergreen…