Friday, December 12, 2014

Something in the Blood

She said, I love him like the moon.  And like the moon his luminosity hypnotised her, yet stayed afar, out of reach.  She recited prayers to the ocean, only asking that they would be carried by his tide, silent prayers, as silent as his ever present absence. 

Friday, October 24, 2014

The October Day

The October Day - extract from the page Other Cairo Musings

A morning tea with two interesting older ladies, sat in a sumptuous Zamalek residence with the most beautiful classic furniture in woods such as yew, walnut and oak - shipped from England many years ago, a portrait of a time when men wore suits and women wore hats and gloves and people sent letters by post. An apartment offering many gifts to those sipping their drinks, handing them a stunning view of the Nile in all her grandeur and uplifting spirit, the green life of trees and the wild climbing roses abounding the balcony. Eating delicate orange scented morsels hand made by a graceful Japanese girl and drinking the most fecund mango juice in the world proudly created by Mr Ahmed at the juice bar and brought to us by the maid.

A walk through streets of cats, dirt and cars and a meeting with a vegetarian friend new to this carnivorous place– we go to the roof bar and our eyes drink the river whilst we peruse the Chinese menu and are served by the waiter that looks like Gael GarcĂ­a Berna and has changed from a shy and quiet young man looking at the floor in April to one who is proudly speaking in English and doing everything to serve us as well as he can in October. We share our stories, eat our noodles and muse on the opportunities of life then part for other compass points.

The taxi home drives past a street lady who once danced by the Dokki metro, an old lady then in a flimsy dress, swaying to an inner music. A precious bird with a brave yet beating heart. Today she is wearing a bright galabeya and an exotically wrapped head dress. And she is laughing, thank god she is laughing. The young taxi driver is speaking to his girlfriend and by his talking I can deduce that she is asking him how much money he has made and where he is and where he is going and I wonder if he is telling her the truth but then I drift off and start to look up at the leaves of the tree against the sky and how fragile they look, how graceful, how beautiful, how unpart of the this mess of a city they are, this glorious insane mess, this Cairo.

The Skirt (this is not a love song)

Please play this song whilst reading the poem


When I wore that skirt
it licked my hips with fire
surged upwards with boisterous Phoenix curls
and stamped its ground revealing my skin

you said
I've never seen you in the daylight before
and I said
I think I might pass out soon
you loved me then
imbibed me as LSD

Poems of minarets, drinks in Tardis bars, kisses in phone booths, grasping intimacies in disused lift shafts and crumbling stairwells, the noise and the heat and the light our demented background for a star filled union

I said
We are two disheveled poets

Gloriously, until a metro car in spring


Thursday, October 2, 2014

Noone Knows How Some Things Come To Be

I have lived so long now inside this snow house
marvelling at the outside yet remaining
in frozen possibilities of connection
deep under the frost

My books and the birds that come, on the balcony, in the late morning
are my constant familiars
as time drips into an unknown thaw

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Silver Dress of Tears

Do not weight yourself with your tears
instead let them be a silver dress
a moon kiss

You thought the path went one way
then you found a mountain grove
and sat blissfully doubting everything
an orange in your hand

You were always better than the stars
so why do you keep reaching
The possibilities are spread as wings
here, now, within your outstretched palms

Red Fruits of Autumn

For some Love is like wine, for others like a knife
i want the love that has a red earth singing
and flowers opening in a dance of joy
i want the love that is bathing in the ocean of heart
and is you and i
When i say Love i say look at the sky and all that blue might
i say jump into its star embrace
the Sun, the Moon, Venus and Mars and all the planets of your birthright
they wish a kiss upon you
You are velvet and jewelled
you are tall grass in summer
you are a beat of fire

This earth wanted you close, to feel your shadow upon her skin
and the winds speak of you with light chatter
i say let us be a Yes stretching the very word out to each corner of the world
until we rightly dissolve into the galaxies of being

Thursday, August 21, 2014

The Waking

She holds the sea within her being
its embrace still a trace in her nights of solitude
The sea goat king, that returned
just as every man called by the ocean

She fought her fire
and mastered the cruel skill of waiting
so that her wine became the taste of her own kiss
salted with tears
fruited with desire
true only in its giving

They were lovers once, her and this water
and they struck a fevered voyage, wind blown sails
that pushed them apart
as the moon returned to its cold reflection
and they lost the stars that guided them

She dreams the songs of desert and sky
and wakes to talismans that tantalise
just for one moment of transition

The birds come
enchanted as they are
by the memories before the dark moon
of the garden and its poets
of the orchard wine
and still the beating of her loving heart

Sunday, June 22, 2014

The Eternal Lovers

Orange flesh, fruit savoured, caramel silk, a kiss open to moon's milk. Orange caramel moon, and I ripe underneath. Waking to a unicorn's horn pointing north east.

Fly above the takers, the shouters, the touchers, the hate. Spread wings joyously, filling with richness, arching with fate.

Let him wear his splendid suit and I shall put on my silver shoes, and together we shall dance, into and into the beautiful, beautiful blue.

Friday, June 6, 2014

The Dream, The Life

This was a dream. Wasn't it? The woman was weaving her snowflaked hair, starring it into a white blanket, iced milk of the sky. She sat by the river, a river frozen in time, towering above her in a suspended curve. She sang quietly, soft songs for the waiting flood, with a voice that could crack the stasis and release the water. She sensed its silent beat in her chest and felt herself opening, less restricted, her heart able to be red and wild next to this cool blue. What did it mean?

An ice pop, languorously unfreezing in the mouth.

Heat closes like a fist around the ice.

An imagined kiss.

Drink of moonlight, and eyes of gold, of lapis and offerings to Isis, sacred colours of love.

'Let us dance,' said the the night as it fled with the stars hand in hand, and by dawn they were undressed, their laughter lighting the sky.

But this is here and I was there; there in my waking dreams I watched that woman and that waiting river, that arch of ice – what memories did it keep? I saw lovers and flowers, a pram, school books, parties, celebrations, arguments, pain and sadness, slammed doors, loneliness, a face with an expression of absence. And in that frozen waiting she felt more alive, for she knew nothing would happen, nothing could happen, and how glorious that was – to be relieved of hope.

A moment – like a spring awakening, a spring tide, an aliveness, and this imagining so fine, so deliciously delicate. Pure.

She was waiting by that frozen river, comforted by inanimation. And I woke and took the words, the shapes, the feelings. I inhabited both the river bank and here, this world of other rivers, or isn't it the same river but in different guises?

I have a list:

happy people

A list is not a life.

But words are a start.

Perhaps they are everything.

They are a wish.

And wishes are powerful.

And I have a heart.

This is a life. Isn't it? The woman is weaving her celestial hair, singing it into a blue blanket, a sublime opera of the sky. She sits by the river, a river stroking, softening alongside her in a lover's curve. She sings joyfully, celebration songs for the life giving waters, with a voice that resounds the openness and meets the river's. She speaks its names in her chest and feels herself opening, with more love, her heart able to be everything next to this blue. It is. 

Friday, May 23, 2014

The Things That Bring Us Back To Life

The seeds pop, crackle and burst
sprouting their leap to the waiting ground

as Earth sings for her new beginnings
stretches her fingers to stroke memories
of lush fields, of wildflowers, of laughter

This is what Love can do
It can revive the deadened heart and brush the sadness from view

and if there is a kiss, it would feel, as the first,
brand new

and listen as she chants to the white flower dancers,
'You is a seed, We is a flower
I is a heat, Us is a fire'

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

The Grand Stardom of Forever

They put him into the warm ground
but his body was without the heat of life
no red drama of being
He was going back
going back to the first mother
to an earth's embrace and a kiss of sky
in a land of nothingness so vast one could only laugh at its freedom
Laugh and dance within the grand stardom of forever

Hold a cherry within your lips
taste this very moment

Love is everywhere

Friday, April 25, 2014

An Honesty in Blue

a thing of beauty
passes between hearts
a known moment
intangible, unexplained
but explored
and given
as a piercing or a softness

I dreamt of a man growing clouds from plant pots, I called one Love and the other War, I dreamt I fell from a fun ride and couldn't get back on, losing all my belongings forever, I dreamt jasmine was growing in my bedroom, a flowering at the end of my bed before a wide window

you and I sat together
it was enough
the kiss, our bodies
an honesty in blue
of night and stars and eclipse
of bright day
your face in the light

your beautiful face

I looked again at the first verse and knew I was struggling to say what my heart remembers, I remember a moment, I remember more, one uncaptured timeline, one which is a warmth in my chest, an opiated sensation in my body, a closing of my eyes to a serenity with a brightness behind

this poem could go on

and I would never be able to say what I want

for how can one explain a gloriousness that was once held in the hand

I did not ask 'Who are you?' for I chose to watch how you leaned towards me, how you smiled and the depth of your eyes. I chose to feel your skin next to mine, the trace of your hand, your lips. I chose to listen to your heart and then to your words and try to see what lay between. I wished for your presence as the Sun rises or the flower opens; gifts that come freely without bidding; something true to know.

And yet it seems that one never knows.

And the truth changes.

And the depth of one's eyes can be a cruel reflection.

I dreamt of a man growing clouds from plant pots, I called one Love and the other War.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Being Elsewhere

I was born from The Leaving
before I could walk I had travelled across the oceans
my father's diaspora in my veins
my mother's exclusion

in my youth I was a dancing light
a chatter of storytelling
like a changeling found within an urban landscape
always aware that I was part of a place I could never return

and so I wandered
and I was joined by gods and goddesses
by nymphs and satyrs
by fools and poets

we sang to astounding stars
nectar upon our lips
heat within our thighs
a drum in our hearts

yet the dark water overflowed me
and I swallowed my fire's ochre tears
as the thieves took all they wished
my execution forgotten in their damp hands

this city wanted me to pray
it did all it could to put my head to the ground
I cannot reinvent myself
not now

not until the wind comes in the horse's mane
for I have gone far away and noone looks for me
I, unembraced for so long
yearning for a soothing kindness

Love is a ravenous creature tearing the soul

Friday, March 7, 2014

The Red Full Stop

This is a night of blood
of red anger
with a moon like a pearl
a bride's bad omen stitched into her dress
foretelling of tears

Somewhere in that milky night
a bird shrieks
hissing whispers spilling
a mother's nightmare

A wardrobe unopened
in a dusty room
as two sons never return

Monday, January 6, 2014

Unicorns and Summer

That time of promise
when all felt well
so fragile in its being here

She asks 'When were you the happiest?'
When I watched your sleeping form
your smooth beauty in all its splendour
you, there, staying

and in His arms
those Loves of mine
solid moments of surety
the feeling of completeness one is told about through stories and myth
but mine are serial, none lasting

Yet I gave up happiness
many years ago
in that cafe in Leiden, smoking our grass
drinking our banana shakes through straws
and the man walked off the street proclaiming 'Life is shadow, as well as light, as there is night and day, as there are seasons, so it is'
since then I expected less
though my heart still breathes only for the One
and I chased the endless summer
with ideas of unicorns
and perfect Love