The theme behind today’s (belated posted, but written yesterday) poem is my lifelong love of Shakespeare. The original concept was to write a sonnet (ie the form he used to create some of the most famous love poems in the language); but that quickly slipped into something else. As preparation I reread (though I really don’t need much of an excuse) Bill Bryson’s slim but wonderful little volume on Shakespeare. If you haven’t read it, I suggest you do. It might also help you get a couple of the, well let’s call them jokes, within the poem. Hahahaha.
little love song
not knowing why : bought a book : Christmas 84 : Campbell’s newsagency : Elizabeth Shopping Centre : remainders table : cheap large format : paperback : paper so cheap : can’t stress : how how cheap : navy blue cover : with a terrible reproduction : of the terrible Droeshout engraving : every play laid out : in tiny font : four columns wide : the sonnets : & long poems : across the bottom quarter : of every page : bland introduction : courtesy : Dennis Allen : M.A. (Oxon) : B.A. (Lond)
read every play : that summer : though the poems : (ironically) : didn’t : do much : probably wouldn’t : couldn’t : today : even with : binocular assistance : oh for the eyes : of youth : loved the wild plots : the stories : the eccentric characters : the humour : loved the language : both the archaic nature : & the richness : so much colour : how he could do : so much : with so few : no doubt didn’t : understand everything : no footnotes in Allen’s : tome : but got enough : to form a lifelong : love
today : love the fact : he annoys so many : conspiracy theorist : nutjobs : Looney : Battey : silly men : who can’t cope : with the idea : (theirs) : of a provincial : country bumpkin : being so talented : profound : influential : the so-called : Shakespeare authorship question : twists : certain men’s knickers : into such knots : they resort to : anagrams : cryptograms : & candidates who died : even as : new plays were : being performed : (solution : they pre-wrote : a wad of plays : prior to death) : was never a question : in his day : nor for : 200 years : the reality : most scholars : laugh : at the ludicrous claims : as : they : should
Would drive 1250 miles just to fall down * Would cut my hair boring businessman short Would keep losing weight till I was wafer thin Would work whatever godawful job necessary Would bid farewell to family & friends Would sell all my books (well most) Would even give away the dog
If you loved me I would move here between the mountains & the rain Would swap my edge of desert bleak heat dry grass existence For your tropical paradise rednecked cultural desert & assault of green Would learn to be happy here Would start again
If you loved me I would do these things For you
* admittedly I’m not walking as far as The Proclaimer’s boasted they would, but the climactic conditions of Scotland & Australia are very different — though I would be going 250 miles further than they promised if that’s any consolation
The Spartan connection Philip II of Macedon had conquered almost every Greek city-state barring Sparta. He sent a message: “If I invade Lakonia you will be destroyed, never to rise again.” The Spartans reply? “If.”
when my parents retire dad wants to live in darwin mum in cradle mountain mum says they’ll meet for a month in the middle (in our country’s so-called dead heart) every five or so years & it’ll be the perfect relationship, lol
Been reading some Emily Dickinson over the past 24 hours, so the layout of this poem has been affected by her typographic style with her Capricious Capitalisation & Extravagant Dashes. (I’d unconsciously kind of half-imitated it in my first draft, & when I realised I thought what the heck & pushed it a bit more.) Still in her early stuff, so the poems I’ve read haven’t really got the dashes working in full swing as she later did. (Which suits me just fine in this pome hahaha.)
it is now One Week — since we Last Spoke & I’m Bravely — Listening to my Special Playlist
Made to Help me get Through those Bucolic Times when I was simply — Missing
You because we Hadn’t spoken — In half a day — Or Whathaveyou
Not sure how I’ll Make It — Through these Thirteen songs
A quick & tasty poem after a long first day back at work after my sick weekend. (It’s one thing to flesh up a poem over the course of several hours, then tweak polish & post it before climbing back into bed — it’s another thing altogether to craft one late at night after working two long shifts.) Despite that, I’m pleased with this one too.
if voices were biscuits yours would be
freshly-baked Monte Carlos with homemade raspberry jam & cream centres if we’ve spoken that day
— but more like my grandmother’s special recipe dark chocolate biscuits dipped in even darker chocolate with mint on top
Today really is symbolic of more than just one loss: it’s a conglomeration of three anniversaries in one. The other two (one in June, one in July) grieve me too — but as they do not fall within Glo/NaPoWriMo they don’t usually get poems written about them. (Though the days of the FoG aren’t the only times poems get written or thoughts get thought about this topic).
Given this month’s theme is love I’ve decided to deliberately include all three griefs in one poem. On the plus side, there are a multiplicity of loves on display within the poem, so it works on many levels.
Today’s poem is paired with one I wrote 28 years ago. It is included as bonus: an Easter egg if you like, not that you have to look too hard to find it.
advice from a fish
although today commemorates the first loss
you’re in countless poems, plays, story ideas all three of you
for endless sorrowfilled years i wore your rings round my neck
till they got too heavy to endure & i was told
by the fish for my own sanity take them off
you knew too well without the self-flagellation of my despair
3 silver rings
around her neck she wears three silver rings on a gold chain & crucifix one, a rose one, a gallic cross & one, all stars & moons
Northing much needs to be said about today’s poem.
the distance between us
when you fly over it : really is extreme : but we’re talking : more : than mere geography : more than : dry flood plains : & barren dirt : for despite the multitude : of commonalities : we gleefully discovered : initially : it seems : different :: lifestyles : environments : modes of communication : (one of us : is loquacious : overshares ; one only gives : information : when crowbarred out) : risk-taking : bravery quotients : willingness to dream : desires for happiness : even : love levels itself
: mean :
since this morning : our souls tread softly : on the shells of grey : shrike-thrush eggs : crushing all song
My two wallowversaries are quite close together this year — Good Friday & Easter Sunday. GF being Day 1 of the Festival of Grief, ES Day 2. Each year I don’t know whether I’ll write about my grief on the date it happened or the day. Some years it’s both. The interesting thing about choosing a theme for the month is it makes me approach topics I’ve written about countless times with fresh eyes. Such as this …
to pin a wish
my only-ever astral child my first star girl my free spirit my whispered wish
only briefly tethered postmarked but never delivered addressed but never sent never faded never dimmed always present in my heart
would’ve loved you with my whole soul every ether of being guided you from child to woman as best i
cradled you comforted you held eggshell close gifted free range love love loved
walked you down any aisle — assuming i could see given my eyes are waterfalls simply imagining such moments
the first wish i’d make if any benevolent genie ever give me a chance
my beautiful wondrous astral-only child my heart was torn away the day you ran red down your mother’s legs