The nightwind is dancing with the leafless trees
under a new moon
as if they were crutches
that couldn’t keep up with its moves.
Lilac month in the valley
and blue hyacinth soon
in the corners of forgotten yards
and for the first time today
down by the
are going blonde
that bruise of a flower
that looks like a cross
between a broken egg and the moon.
like a dab of violet paint
in the foreground of a drab impression.
The apple-trees are waiting for their brides like blossoms.
Saturn’s in Virgo
and I’m out for stars
on my hobby-horse of a telescope
that’s jealous of the easel I paint on
because it thinks it’s the unheralded genius
and can do more with light
than that other moron.
More Copernicus for the moment
than van Gogh
I cut through fields
that look like November all over again
now that the snow’s gone
to keep from being blinded
by the blazing of the town
attentive as a doe to the barking
of distant farmyard dogs.
I’m a one man band of snapping twigs
and slashing branches
moving deeper into the silence
away from windows and doors.
My telescope sneers at the vanity
of birches posing in the nude
because they’ve heard I’m a painter
into feminine nocturnal effects.
And I’ve been here before
looking for suitable subjects
but tonight I’m out for stars
and the wounded mystery of being alone
in a place that everything’s adapted to
but where nothing feels it belongs
to judge by the way they keep to themselves.
Wherever I am
the stars have always reminded me of home
as if this were the place of exile
and the testing ground
of life on earth
to see who makes it back
and I am stilled and mindbound
by such a commingling
of longing wonder and sadness
my blood burns like a lovesong
to the great absence that keeps us apart
and how much time and distance it takes
to abandon a heart that clings
like colour to the clouds.
How much darkness
must be intensified by a human
into black matter
before the ore
is prodigal with light.
All the good stars are going down with Taurus
though I can see the snakes
still flaring lethally in Al Gol
like the Medusa’s severed head
and there’s that poor man’s chandelier
still enchanted with the charms
of Alcyone and her sisters
though like me
they’re getting on in years.
shifting into infrared.
All the blue-white fury
that was the frequency of my youth
the mellow yellow of the autumnal truth
that the seeing might be as ageless
as the perennial insight
into the beginningless birth of the mind
but my eyes are estranged from the light
like two drops of water on a starless night
ripening like bells
sweetened by thoughts of perishing
above the abyss below them.
Hanging from the tip of a blade of stargrass
they’re trying to remember
what became of the wedding
that wore them like an orchard up the aisle
before they’re lowered
like the eyelids of a crocus
into the source of themselves
like a well that can’t hold back its tears
when it remembers
light on the mindstream
like a voice in a dream
they haven’t heard for years.
What can you say?
Life is a breathful.
And if I were to guess
it’s probably better that way.
Don’t wear the silver off the mirror
with too much looking
but glance at it out of the corner of your eye
as if to say under your breath
o.k. you’ve got my attention
You should stay alert to things
without crowding them out of their eyes
the way a snakecharmer
listens to the cobra
not his flute
and maintains his dangerous distance.
And don’t judge things by their magnitude.
Sometimes it’s the dim stars
like the pale one above the middle
of the brightest three in Andromeda
that can lead you to a galaxy.
But there too you have to look askance
even to see hundreds of billions of stars
shining at such a great distance
right next door.
When everything in the knowable world is relative
it’s because of the interdependence of its origins
on everything else
and blood is thicker than water
except when it’s not
but when all is said and done
we’re all the seventh son of the seventh son
of an identity theft.
there’s another mule
kickin in your stall.
Born of fire without smoke
you’re a jinn.
Born of water without ice
you shine like a sea urchin.
Born of earth without roots
there’s starmud on your boots.
Born of air without clouds
you’re welcome everywhere.
Born of stars without eyes
you come as quite a surprise to them.