Birth and Death of Angels

I Magical Fruit

Prologue: Legend

Hills clung with purple mist
To brown and russet swathe
Of wintered branch;
Water hastening down stone
A copper green,
Flows with incontinent seethe
Across the lichened rust

Of a winter valley
Where it folds
Into a legend of ore and dust.

O Seasons, O Castles

(A translation of Arthur Rimbaud’s O saisons, O Châteaux)

O seasons, o castles,
What soul is faultless?

O seasons, o castles

I have made a magic study
Of happiness, there for everybody.

O long life! and rejoicings
Each time the French cockerel sings.

I shall have nothing to desire
My life in its life entire.

Its charm! steals body and soul
And dissolves me all.

What can my words reply?
It makes them flee and fly!

O seasons, o castles!

Angels

Lonely voices in the dark
Angels
Dream light from flesh
The day is theirs
And the night
Angels
Entrance the hours
The secrets
And the sadness of the evening
Angels
Fall from dangerous heavens
Rejoicing in flight
A bright rain of fire
In the night!
Angels

Angels are lovers

Fuego I

Voces solitarias en la noche
Angeles
La luz es sueños arrancados
De su carne
El día es su día
La noche es suya
Angeles
Encantan las horas
Los secretos
Y la tristeza de la tarde
Al caerse de cielos peligrosos
Se alegran du su vuelo
¡Brillante lluvia de fuego
En la noche!

Apple Blossom

From the apple blossom
There is promise,
At night its smell is richer
And its promise dearer
Especially by moonlight.

Her hands are rinsed
In that perfume,
Her breasts smell like flowers
Her orchard tenderness
Is dark and fiery as eclipse.

Birth

Born
In the hospital bed
Shaking like a womb-expulsed
Infant
He cradles
And rocks himself out of pain.
Love
He was in love with the slight
Curly-haired nurse
In the striped uniform-
Her name was Agnes, lamb-
Who lifted him from
The steaming bath and held him
In her arms.

Borne
In her arms
He would give birth
So much he loves life
He would open his legs and thrust
A girl-child out, with golden hair
And silver dreams
Birth
Easy as the leafing of birch trees
In April.

Love
The day is long
The night is held
In a million hearts
The sky flashes
The rain thunders
With a voice that aches
But still the belly hungers
For birth
And the mouth thirsts
For love.

Fuego II

En sus brazos
Nacido
Daría a luz
Tanto quiere la vida
Abría las piernas y empujaría
Fuera una niña, con pelo
De fuego dorado,
Y sueños de plata
Innocente
Nacimiento tan fácil
Como el echar hojas
De los árboles
En abril.

Un millón de corazones
Abrazan la noche
Se rompe la rama
Truena la lluvia
Con voz de pena
Fuego y estrellas
Cantan
Estamos vivos
¡Estamos vivos!
Todavía la barriga
Tiene ansias de nacimiento
Y la boca sed
De amor.

Magical Fruit

She has everything
To offer him
Magical fruit,
Desire never grows cold.
She gives him everything
Her orchard holds
Magical fruit,
Desire never grows old.
Where leaves and sap enfold,
She is his sweetest song
Magical fruit,
Desire grows bold
In her branches he embraces all heavens,
Magical fruit,
Desire untold.
The stars, she says, are for him
Magical fruit,
His root is in her,
Desire is gold.

Luz

No sé
Y no quiero saber
Donde se apaga la luz.

No sé
Y no quiero saber
Donde la luz se muere.

No sé
Y no quiero saber.

Amor
Mis ojos nacieron para ti
Donde tu estás
Hay luz
Donde no estás
Yo no sé
Y no quiero saber
Como vivir.

We were there

(For Joan)

I

We were there
When the reign of stars
Announced the birth of days
We were there!
We were there
When the first light
Of innumerable dawns
Sprang to life in lovers’ eyes
We were there!
We were there
When hearts discovered tongues
Torn with tenderness
And tangled words and tangled sounds
Made sense of emptiness
We were there!
We were there
And dreamt our dreams
Face to face with the first
Death of Sun
And the first longing for tomorrows
We were there!
We were there
Where the serpent’s kiss
Envelops the moon
And hopes drop dead
At the feet of time
We were there!
We were there
Running naked to our first bed
In which the entire cosmos
Of earth and fire, of air and light
Melded
In one unforgettable moment
Of comfort and forgiveness
We were there!
We were there
Born from the stars that cradled us
We were there!
We were there
And did not regret
Not a single moment!

In all the time I’ve known you
Even your bitterness has been sweet
Where you are
I want to be!

II

Sheltered star-
Windswept star-
Whatever you are
Believe me!
I was born to be with you
I was born
Black wind swirling to black dawn
Black fruit falling from black trees
Black heart awash with black dreams
Till you awakened the light in me
And I was born.
I was born
The boards creaked
And groaned with salt water
The course was set
There was an Albatross
Around my neck
To drag me down.
I have been drowned
But return to the dead
Never will I-
Not after you.
I was born, born
Ranting, grasping, heaving
With birth
I was born, born, born
To be with you-
Sheltered star
Windswept star
Whatever you are.
Bright, bright, bright
Chain around my heart.

Autumn Birth

Dearest Love
The birth of days
Was slow
Unfolding
From the dark ways
Of the inglorious past.

When I met you
The darkness of time
Flashed bright
And light did a dance
With warm beauty
In the heart of the world
There has never been a sweeter song
Of tender fear
And tremulous beginning
Not before, not ever
Then and now
You were the golden birth
Of new time
You were all the world had been creating
Unknown to me
You were all I could never imagine
The Unimagined
Waiting for me.

Green and gold
You entered my life
With new life
New light for a new world
The transfigured past
Stood still
And one autumn evening
One September day
You fell from the tree of heaven
Like an apple
Into my hands.

No quiero más que verte

Tengo la libertad
De querer o no querer
Y no hago nada
¿Qué libertad es que no me deja
La libertad
De liberarme?

Tengo la libertad
De ir hacia la luz o hasta la oscuridad
No hago nada
¿Qué libertad es que no me deja
La libertad
De liberarme?

Tengo la libertad
Y no quiero más que verte
Y tengo que esperar

Tengo la libertad
Y ya lo sé la vida es más que sueño
Tengo la libertad
Tengo que verte antes de morir.

The Eyes Of Stars

My eyes tell me.
I thought I had escaped
From every snare my heart had lain
But trapped and out of breath
I know the same old pain
This has to be the last time
The angels fall
This has to be the last time
I’m prisoner to a name
This has to be the last time
I can’t bear the thought of you-
This has to be the last time
Dead eyes stare out of a purblind mirror
This has to be the last time
Love was never like this
In the eyes of stars.

Inalcanzable

Imposible amor
Quiero morir bajo tu luna
Imposible amor
La vida no es fantasía
Imposible amor
Te llamo ¡inalcanzable!
¿Qué haces con tus sueños?
Imposible amor
No hay nadie que no te conoce
Imposible amor
Te llamo ¡inalcanzable!

The Apple

Her mouth was made to eat fruit
The apple when she touches it
Urges itself open
To admit her tongue
She subdues with her lips the skin
Tears soft with her teeth
The white of flesh
And though the core is hidden
It yields her ingress
And breaks for her, sweet as sin,
Deep in penetration,
Though the seed is black within.
Deep in penetration,
Though the seed is black within.

Winter Gold

We live in her light
When she appears
Our darkness breaks
Free
The night
Is loosened
From around our throat
The cold
Seeps out of us
Flowers spring
From our winter root
She is the seed and the shoot
Of our efflorescence
She is the mouth and the tooth
That tears our naked
Luminous fruit
See

Will she pluck us?
If we sing tonight?

The Orchard

She is always the same
Mystery.
Today she is golden haired,
At the edge of the artificial lake,
Dressed in black like a mourning Venus.

In Florence, she wore ear-rings
Ellipses of light,
So sophisticated,
She was sacred and profane,
Totally pure, even when whore.

In the orchard,
She bore,
The fragrance of apples,
Ending paradise,
With her lips.

Fingerprints Left In Eden.

The morning rises with you
Sharp sunlight in dewy grass
Shines bright like bladed glass
Under the careful tread of your bare feet
Though I know the map of your bones
You have left nothing in my bed
Only remembrances-

It is never enough
I long to touch the light
That is your light
I long to rise and follow…
But you are gone.
Through the arms of the apple trees
You sweep like a dancer silently
And your silence cuts
Through the shadows
Like a song
While I, I
My dreams broken spill
From torn sleep
Like red rock out of a fissure
Falling falling falling
With nothing to hold on to.

Let me tell you
I want to be the tree
You throw yourself around
And crush so tight
Its light is crushed in your arms.
It’s not for nothing I call you Eve,
Hands clasped to the bark
In the first light
Of aching desire.
Afterwards I will find it
And discover
Your touch
Fingerprints left in Eden
And I swear I will never forget you!
How could I?

(First published in the Anchor Books anthology Snowflake Kiss, March 2002)

II The Rose

Golden Apple

There is a path that goes to the Orchard
Goes back to the earliest of memories
To the time when children played there
When their lives were like flowers and fruit
When a woman’s voice perfumed like flowers
Sweet like fruit
Called them back home through the dusk
With one name only remaining there
Painfully daggered in tree’s bark
Her name, Eve’s
Golden, her arms reaching above her head
To pull the golden apple down
And offer it to her Adam
Her boyish clown.

Girlish Lyric I

A sky hazed white with heat
With birds langourously
Aglide she sees;
Flying emblems adrift on
The air beneath
Followed with a child’s eye
And with a child’s heartbeat

From garden into field
Motes in a glass
Orbit of air and light, a child’s space.

Girlish Lyric II

Watched her make a child’s graph
With a child’s abstraction
From simple place;
Spilling wet from dew-soaked grass
As she treads blades
Of silvered green in a curve
Made of childish fashion

Through the first forlorn estate
Of her first stage
Of freedom, of imagining, of knowledge.

Cradle Child

Her arms are folded to cradle child
Swinging emptily as she strides along the road
Her eyes are black with night
And in her head there is the singing of a lullaby
It is the Springtime
And she has just learned to spell love in a copybook
And it has given her hunger for birth.

The Rose

Remember
The gift of a wild rose
That grew in a small boy’s back-garden
She took it
In her small girl’s hands
And it grew there, longing for birth.
Long after she cut it
And held it to her skin
Where it had the feverish beauty
Of her sex in flower
She made it her secret
And kept it in her bedroom
Where it flourished
Fed on young woman’s dreams, longing for life.
Later her lover brought it in
From the rain
And shook its raindrops over her
Then her sex was like a rose
Shaken by the rain
A gift of love
From a small boy’s back-garden
Remember.

Birdsong

You spread your wings out of the shadowed morning
The dawn is gentle with you
As you begin your flight
And sweep across the light
Your night dreams fall from you
Like a dress falling
To gather at the feet of the earth
In a mound of secret colours
Of secret shadows and tenderness
Where the sunrise does not touch nor dispel regret.

You made love in the darkness
Giving yourself to its nakedness
Where it pinioned and broke you
With sweetness
Crushed nostalgia in your thighs
Speaking to you of birth and births
Your voice heard and responded
With a thousand tremors.

Nothing could have shaken it more
As sleep gathered you in its dreams
And released you like a bird.

III Love Song

Morning Sunlight

Morning sunlight
Her golden hair
Trembles with the breath
Of the summer wind.

A purple crocus
Sheets twisted and stained
From love-making.

The wind shakes the trees
The heart beats
In anticipation of a birth.

Restless Birds

A woman’s mouth
With her smile
She delighted
One moment of my life.

The smell of candles flaming
As she moves
Silk dances around her feet.

Her hands
Like restless birds
And in the starry night
The moon is rising.

Emerald Green

Shadowed light
Sensing someone is watching her
She turns, catlike.

Silence
Her dreams are secret and mysterious
As shadows on the moon.

Emerald green
Her flesh flowers inside
The curves of her dress
Soft, loving breasts.

Tenderness
One could lie in the crease
Of her palm
And melt there in its warmth.

Fullness
Her dreams
Soon it will be Easter
When the wakened earth flowers.

Cherry

She took my hand
In the corner of a dry field
A flowering Cherry.

She lay down
Like summer upon a grassy field
One day in June.

Her dress falls to her feet
Her hand pulling a white-petalled flower
From a low branch.

Falling rain
The light lies broken over cloud
In the west.

The moon is gone from the sky
Her glance is shadowy and tender
As an ending.

Mother

The voice of a child
In the morning
The bedroom
Is bright with sun.

Her hair golden
Poppies crown her
Sunlight follows her.

A mother singing
Flowers shaking and dancing
In the sunlit wind.

I am so afraid of losing the wonder

(A translation of Lorca’s Tengo Miedo De Perder La Maravilla)

I am so afraid of losing the wonder
Of your eyes like a statue’s, and the accent
Set on my cheek at night
By the solitary rose of your breathing.

It hurts me to be on this river’s edge
A tree without branches; what hurts me more
Is to have no flower, pulp or clay
For the snail of my suffering.

If you are my hidden treasure,
If you are my cross and my moist pain
If I am the dog of your domain

Do not let me lose what I have gained
But dress the water of your river
With the fallen leaves of my estranged autumn.

Time and Silence

Time and silence
A hard frost
Covers the still earth.

Night and dreams
Moonlight falls
In the deserted garden
Solitude.

Foreboding
In the spring
The pink cherry flower
Is broken from the bud.

A friend dies
A yellow Iris stands alone
In a black vase.
It is still spring.

Sanctuaries
She embraces
And is embraced
By dream.

Shadows

Shadows have come to the trees
Resting in the arms of the cherry
Translating a dusty memograph
Years hence
Through the lens of a camera
For a moment proud of who he is
As the shutter snaps.

A name is cut in the skin of this one,
The same one as he sits on
Angela, growing black with age,
Like a fingered, blackened prayer,
Who was she, and to whom,
Scribing an anguished flesh in bark,
Was she speechless love?

If I were he, I would have wrote:
In the Spring
I will bear you flowers.

In Darkness

A woman sleeping
At night
The earth is heavy
With memory.

Her face half in shadow
An aftermath of dream
The breath of nostalgia.

The day is ending
A voice in darkness
Soft as lovers parting.

A broken song
The endless, starry night
The dark Universe.

One Night’s Dreams

It was the time
Of condolences
And the sea was bitter
In the gardens
The flowers had been bitten
By a sudden snap
Her hands could not bear
To touch them
Even to see them die
Was too cruel
She had nurtured them
To see them broken
So much for life
And the fragile beauty
Of living things
That could not outlast
One night’s dreams.

The Winter Sings of Death

The cold has broken the skin
Of her hands and face.
This winter is the harshest
It sings of death
And has forgotten its stars
Forgotten there are dreams
In the old lady’s heart.

Clouds Passing

Clouds passing
Footsteps at night
Echoing down an empty corridor.

Taurus

Little Bull
Has no horns
Little Bull.

Time has slipped you
From its hull
Of dreams
And swept you on
To further stars
And fiercer hearts
Than ours could be.

Little bull,
Sleeping bull
Or dreaming.

The little bull is dead
And as with each death
The Universe is emptied
A little more.
Life does not know what it has missed
And will not miss what it
Has never known-

Safe in our dreams
We see the dead.

Flowers

A child’s golden head
The earth is broken and from its wounds
Flowers grow.

Yellow Iris

A door is closed
She is full of laughter
Suddenly
Gone silent-

Memories
A yellow Iris lies
In her empty lap
Stranded-

Voices
Her heart is full
With remembered past
This evening-

Darkening
The clock speaks each second
Clearly, distinctly
Relentlessly-

Helpless
She too would like to speak
But her words have the silence
Of dead ones-

Love lost
The word birth in her womb
Stirs at the touch
Of her heart breaking.

Love Song

Flor
Amor
Algo escondido
Casi olvidado
Que surge por casualidad
Luz que tiene
La imposible ternura de un beso
Perdido
La imposible tristeza de un nombre de mujer
Que no se puede decir.
Flor
Amor
Tú.

In the Darkness of the Unknown
A Flower raises its Light
Towards the New!

Tomorrow A Dream

A dream
In the night
A woman’s voice
Intangible as her perfume.

Tomorrow
A moment of tenderness
Revives from the still past.

IV Troubled Dreams

Crashing Through Twilight

The court sits
Noises come through walls of wood
Trees dimly lit leap from darkness
The sound of steel twisting
Tangles in the night time.
What did you see in the evening light?
Bodies broken and car strife-
What did you see in the newborn night?
The judge upon a pedestal
Mallet in hand
Crashing through twilight.

Sueños

Vivo en un país sin color
Salvo el que viene
A traves de los sueños
De los casi muertos
Que se ven por aquí
Arrastrándose por las calles

Al levantar los ojos
Al sonreír sin esperanza
Se ven por aquí
Los sueños de los muertos
Que por aquí
Se arrastran por las calles

Querida, querida,
Querida,
Van hacia la mar
Hacia la mar se van
Ofrecerse a la hija de la mar
O ahogarse.

Night Time

There was a night without moon
Without stars
Black night hooded beast
Eating the dark apple of the earth…
Someone’s soul hung on branches howled
Howled
Like a cur dying
Stirring him out of sleep
‘Quiet boy, quiet boy,’ he whispered
And turned back to darkness
Six hours before the bells ring
Six hours with death hanging round our necks
Like a rosary beads.
Sick in his prayers he covers his mouth…
What shall he say about himself
And his nightmare?
Turning to her sleeping as always
Happy with the world…
‘When I am alone I die!’
But she does not hear, never hears
And he longs to bestride the morning
If it ever comes
Here it comes!

Arise, Adam
Sleep is ended
Dreams are mended
Heart racked and rended
Soul torn untended
Silence befriended
The night is over
Death comes knocking at the door
Hissing like a snake
Scream at the daylight
And be at peace.

Mother Darkness

The darkness of a mother
The earth secret in winter
This evening the birds are silent
And the grasses voiceless in the rain.

In the night there will be the old nostalgia
For dreams touching her sleep like a fretful hand,
It is always past something when she looks at the clock.
When she was young her imagination was like a fire
Suddenly caught flame, and time was ripe.
Tomorrow is a word broken upon her lap,
Empty as her sex is. No more children.
No more dreams, no more shouts of joy.
In the night there will be the same yearnings,
And her body curled up like a foetus-
And her bed as perfect as the grave.

Mysteries

An old man with barbed wire coiled
Around his hands like a rosary beads
Cannot wipe sweat from his forehead
For fear of tearing his eyes out
Loses himself in prayers.

River of darkness, river of light
River of day, river of night
Downriver the corpses float smiling
Under a cold burning television sun
There must have been ten thousand
Remembered in the priest’s prayers
When he said: Pray for the dead
Ten thousand dead
In the river of darkness, river of light

On the horizon angels stand, spear in hand
On the horizon, not on the land,
Where the dreamless stand in wonderland
Mocking each other
Mysteries come, mysteries go
But we remain under the stars, what a laugh!

A man with barbed wire coiled round his hands
Like a rosary beads
Eats an apple, dreaming of Eve
The only lover he ever had,
And the only temptation
Oh for some forbidden fruit,
Oh for some forbidden fruit,
Strains the barbed wire tight round his heart.

There’s famine in the far-off television hills
Every born man, woman and child knows hunger
Flies buzz in the lips of prayers,
And God weeps in the throat of a woman.

On the death of Francis Stuart

(Irish writer Francis Stuart’s novel A Hole in the Head was a hymn to the power of the imagination. This poem was written a couple of years before his death and was published in the letters page of the Sunday Tribune shortly after he died.)

On the death of Francis Stuart
Heads will turn loose
Tired formulas
Tired as the tired formulas
Of tired books
And say:
We have lost now
The power of imagination
Of a hole in the head
And why were we ever content
With defunct dreams
When we had a hole in the head
To set his books
Crackling like a stick of dynamite
Between our ears?
Heads will turn
Heads will fall
In the game of pitch
And toss the critics play
There is no repentence.
It will be too late.
Heads you think you win
But Heads you lose
Time has stolen away
What you never knew you needed
The risk of pain.
So sing it:
You need Francis Stuart like you need
A hole in the head
Sing it:
Everybody needs a hole in the head
Everybody needs a hole in the head
Before it’s too late
Before it’s too late
A hole in the head
A hole in the head
Before it’s too late
A hole in the head.
Before it’s too late.

On the Death of José y Ciria de Escalante

(A translation of Lorca’s En la Muerte de José De Ciria Y Escalante)

Who will say I saw you, and in what moment?
Such agony of burning shadow!
Two voices speaking: the clock and the wind
While the morning rises without you.

A delirium of ashen nard
Drowns your sweet head
O Friend! Passion! Anguished light! Memento.
Come back moon and heart of nothing.

Come back moon: with my own hand
I will throw your apple into the turbid river
Full of gold fish and summer.

And you, above, so high, green and cold,
Forget me! And forget the vain world
Sweet Giocondo, friend.

Lamentation

(A translation of Lorca’s Casida Del Llanto)

I have closed the balcony doors
To silence grief
Yet behind closed doors
Nothing is heard but grief.

Very few angels are singing
Very few dogs barking
A thousand violins lie in the palm of my hand
But grief is an enormous dog
Grief is an enormous angel
Grief is an enormous violin
Tears muzzle the wind
And nothing is heard but grief.

A Hole in Heaven

I stand up
I sit down
I stand up
I sit down
I stand up
I sit down
Until I am tired of standing up
Until I am tired of sitting down

I stand up
I run around the room
I run out of the room
I run back into the room
I run through the room

I stand up
I sit down
I stand up
I sit down
I stand up
I sit down
Until I am tired of standing up
Until I am tired of sitting down
There must be a hole in heaven
The Angels fell through

There must be a hole in heaven
But what can I do?

Sometimes
From ever-recurring time to
Ever-recurring time
I feel in all my senses
Abandonment.

There must be a hole in heaven
And nothing I can do.

I stand up
I sit down
I stand up
I sit down
I stand up
I sit down
Until I am tired of standing up
Until I am tired of sitting down

So hard these days to feel alive!

The Flat Earth

Because the earth is flat
I will not leave dry land
Because the earth is flat
I will not stand at horizon’s end
Where space dips down to emptiness
Because the earth is flat
I will not love you
Because the earth is flat
Because everyone says the earth is flat
Because everyone says the earth is flat

Because the earth is flat
I intend staying at home
Where all I need to fear is rain
And the garden has such comfortable borders
And the neighbours’ eyes approve my every move
As they clap each other’s back and scream
If only I had my freedom back
The good old explorer days, hah!
You, I and Columbus
Drunk in a tumbling haze,
Drunk as children gazing at the moon.
Those were the days
If only we had them back
If only the earth wasn’t flat
If only we could fly to the corners
Of the Universe and say, I live!
Then turn back, then turn back!
If only the earth wasn’t flat!

But I see it in your eyes
Dreams collapsing like imploding stars
In the heart of some vulture midnight
Dead hopes hanging from a tree somewhere
Like some lynched dreamer…
Dogs barking at the faraway stars
Furious to catch each flaming meteorite
We could escape the flat world, they bark
If it wasn’t flat, if only it wasn’t flat.

Now it’s time for tea and more tea
In the flat world
Now it’s time to eat some cake and choke
Now it’s time to take a bath and drown
Now it’s time to go to bed and suffocate
Now it’s time in the flat world
Now it’s time to read and write
Now it’s time to scratch and bite
Now it’s time to love and lie
Now it’s time to marry and die
Now it’s time, now it’s too late
Now it’s time in the flat world
Now it’s time to pluck out your eyes
And put them on a plate
Now it’s time, now it’s time in the flat world
Between you and heaven to settle
Your pact of darkness.

Topless

Topless, headless, rootless
I have nowhere to fall to
Nowhere to fall from.
I have neither earth nor air
To hold on to
Nor earth nor air
To hold on to me.
I am ready to surrender
To my own abandonment
I am ready to surrender
To the emptiness of the moment
Not wanted I will not resist
When you move away-

Eden was like this
A woman’s smile turned towards a serpent
A man on his knees craving temptation
If only we had sons to support us
And not kill each other
If only we had dreams.

When I wake I see the light
Dawn light, morning light,
The light of hope.

I swerve I swerve
I swerve like an out-of-control car
Through the light of days
Smiling on all and sundry
Seeking the meaningful gesture
That will kill me.
I see it in your eyes, in your face,
In your hands.
I am no fool
I know!
I know hidden things
I know you will leave me
I know you will be gone soon.
And I know there is nothing I can do
And so I go out in the morning as you did
To die there.

And when Adam left Eve to dig with dry, dead bones
In the dry, dead earth
And hide
The autumn leaves had already fallen.

(first published at Catalyzer Journal online 2001)

Nada

Nada soy
Nada sin tí
Que no te olvido nada.

Pasan las tardes
Pasan los inviernos
Pasan los soles
Pasan los pájaros
De todos los sueños
Salvajes
Que vuelen por tus paisajes.
Pasan los mundos
Pasan los tiempos
Todo se desvanece por el sur
De todos los futuros
Pasan los futuros
Los planetas, estrellas
Universos
Pasan, pasan
Todo desaparece con la gracia
De una mujer vestida de negro
Una tarde de invierno
Tanta belleza que asombra
La luz
Pasan mujeres, sombras,
Pasan las luces
Todo se pierde por el sur
De todos los amores
Pasan los amores, los besos
Bellos como flores
Pasan los labios
Que saben abrir todos los tesoros
Hundidos en los cuerpos
Perdidos de amantes encendidos
Pasan los tesoros
Pasan, pasan, pasan
Todos pasan
Pasan pasan
Alegrías, tristezas, fantasmas…
¿Qué hacer con la memoria?
¿Qué recordar?
¿Qué no olvidar?

Ya lo sabes
Que ya he pasado
He pasado todo
Y nada soy
Nada soy sin tí
Nada soy
Y no te olvido nada
No te olvido
Nada soy
Y no te olvido
Nada.

V The Dance with Mother

Journey into Darkness

The sun toiled
Over our days of dreams
And we had no respite
From our fears of falling
But when the sun fell
It released us for our journey…
And we were happy to enter darkness.
We had to wait till night
For the stars to shine on us!

The Dance with Mother

A Battle Dream, Soldier On!
Earth and Heaven nearly One!
Earthsong Journeysong Swansong!
The Earth’s Desire for Heaven!
All the Bad Things have been done!
All the Good Songs have been sung!
The Dance with Mother just begun!

The Dance with Mother just begun!
All the Good Songs have been sung!
All the Bad Things have been done!
The Battle is Over, the War is Won!
The Earth in Love with Heaven!
The Right Seed in the Right Season!
And the Dance with Mother
The Dance with Mother
The Dance with Mother…
just begun!

Here is tomorrow

Here is tomorrow
All bright newness
A dance of stars
Dancing bright to the music
Of the Universe.

Here is tomorrow
Magical fruit
Hung upon a tree of heaven blue
Shot through with the searching desire
Of some fiery comet.

Here is tomorrow
Gold and silver,
Sparkling true
Flickering jewels
In the bed of night’s singing river.

Here is tomorrow
The dawn leaps
Across a myriad mysteries
And a myriad dreams
While Time still sleeps.

Here is tomorrow
The call of a lover
Under the sheltering skies
That nest in the spreading wings
Of Forever.

Here is tomorrow
We have been waiting
For the breaking of shadows
The shadows break
Where Time lies dreaming

Here is tomorrow
The Heart taking flight
To the Horizon’s hold
Of dancing stars
And dancing starlight.

Here is tomorrow
Dream and dance!
Here is tomorrow
J’attends toujours le petit miracle!
Holding in its hands
Your future!

Duras

I knew there was pain but pain was not aching

Tom Verlaine

We have not slept, not really…
All dream, this dream
This hunger
Which urges us to Duras!

Under the pale sky
The sleepless trees
Caress of leaf
Kiss of Moon
Eyes seeking stars
Duras!

The sky falls
Shower of flame
In the heat of desire
Rising again
Love, peace, beauty, truth
The path of life
Duras!

Duras! Duras!
Around the next corner…
A heartbeat away…
Duras! Duras!
Our Duras!

The Way

(For filmmaker Richard Horn, in memory of many adventures)

Where did the Search begin?
Under the snows of the Sierra
Or climbing a steep hill above Dublin?
The Path can be traced from the sands of the Sahara
To the eclipse of lovers in a hotel room in Mexico.
Where did it begin and where is it going?
Who went before and who is following?
We wished to know the right way, everyone said it’s in you!
It could be Paris, Florence, Madrid or Rome, or a thousand different places.
It could be any one or all of a thousand different faces…
It has a strange pattern, can’t you see?
Like an imprint of stars on a hillside near Granada
Waiting, wanting to be read
Like the secret scripture of the Alhambra…
Like Heaven exiled in the Alpujarra
Like when Richard said ‘the dream is possible’
Making the film of all our lives, the ones we had lived
And the ones we had wanted to live…
The possible and the impossible
Rolling drunk on the floor of a bar in Cordoba.
How we will remember it!
We had so many friends then, and so many days
Each one giving birth to a thousand new suns
We had studied magic and we were happy!
Ripe for journey, we longed for summers without rain
We thought we would go South again!
That summer all the world was falling South
Andalucia fell in soft folds of skirt from the waist of Spain
Its name, like a woman’s, enchanted us
Knowing what it is like to love again…
In our hearts we had Jasmine for Remembrance
In our eyes the promise of Pomegranate
We were ready for anything
Who knows what the journey will bring, if we dance and if we sing?
Who knows the flower of our desiring?
We have travelled far but nothing is far to the traveller who dreams…
Do you remember the wild birds that flew to the moon to die?
They did not stop, not even for the sea…
There must be a way
It is in us or beyond us…
Let’s hope we find it!

The Journey

On his Journey
Wave upon Wave
Held him from breaking
In the Heart of Oceans.
He held his Faith in Stars
Even as the Heavens crushed
The timber of his Dreams
To a residue of Dust.
Live, life, live, life, the Waters sang
From the depths of a drowning world
Live life, still believing, Soldier On!

There was Time and no Time
All and Nothing to be done
All the Bad Things had been said
All the Good Songs had been sung.
A Birth each breath of Ocean,
A Death each sigh of Star,
The Universe a Woman
Torn between Peace and War.
Love, life, love, life, the Winds sang
Over the darkness of a Dying World.
Love, life, still believing, Journey On!

It was the Beginning
And the End
The Lights flickering in Harbour
Called the Sailor to his Bed
Her Arms reached out to embrace
The Ship of the Living, the Ship of the Dead!
He sang to each! O Planets, Sing Me!
Music, Dance, and Harmony!
O Planets, melodiously!
One more song for Mother!

Birth Day

(For singer-songwriter Thom Moore on his birthday, December 6th 2002)

The heavens wheel
A rim of stars on the shoulders of Atlas
Lost in his own immensity of darkness.
Labouring against the days of stone.

Hers was sweeter labour
Under the starry hulk
Of all space and time
That plied her like an ocean liner
En route for unknown territories,
The daring dream of some brave navigator.

How could she know she had given birth to you?
The Universe.
Only between myth, magic and reality
Your feet tread the planets she made for you…
While your head sleeps dreaming in her starry lap.
And when you wake, you sing and sing…
And set her heart tingling!
Like it did when you danced on the kitchen floor
For her! For her! O Mother!

The whole world was entering winter
With a coat of ice and sleet on its back
Hunched over fires blazing
Like yellow gorse aflame on a Monaghan hillside
The mind turning in its circles of meditation
The heart yearning for the warmth of a song.

A horse on a sliding road struggled against snow
Hoping for its master’s quiet command
And the promise of home before nightfall
Nestling in the shelter of old Sligo.
In a country cottage the striking-up of some country band
The musicians’ fingers tangling with the strings of their instruments
Plucking playful, plangent melodies from the labyrinth of notes
Like quiet snowflakes falling, so gorgeous, so bright… falling…
Falling… on and on… and on…
The legacy of all lives lived everywhere
Catalina, Votkinsk, Dublin, the Lebanon…
All lives caught in all song.

It was the first morning of the first journey
The world spun its orbit wide
Around the birth of new sun
The wind brought a new dawn
To the heart of an old, cold season
She had travelled so far to give birth.
Nothing could still her hunger
In the depth of winter
A song without a singer!
Yearning! Yearning!

She had known nothing like this…
The sweetest song was that of a baby crying
Wild and strong
Your voice was her voice singing
Your song her song…
You were all she could have imagined
And all she had ever wanted
To tell the distance from near to far
From old life to new life, old dream to new dream
Old star to new star, and back again…
She held you and would hold you
All life and love is true…
This is what she promised you.
You were her promise and her gain…
You were worth her every pain,
And would be worth it all again!

Love is right… she sings… all life is true…
Hear it in the windy night!
Hear it… in the windy night!

Symphony

For the evening she dressed in a symphony of sunsets
Her hair stole fire from the downfall of stars
Planets and comets made lace for her breasts
Her thighs pooled rich harmonies of Venus and Mars
Her Heavens lay swept with the silk of solar rains
Her Universe torn with infinite birth pains
All desire subdued with a Traitor’s Kiss
The body of the Female in the hands of the Archaeologist.

Burning away the palace of starry sky
Digging in the flesh of the Universal lie
Revealing the nothing Earth has wed
A scattering of bones in the caves of the Dead.

Swansong of the Stars

The stars sing in darkness-
Haven’t you heard their swan-song?
Nature torn
Love foresworn
The Universe
A Battlefield
No more.

Is there still a pity
To be won?
Still some good song
To be sung?

This broken dream
This silence
Of all hope
Where money and metal
Darkness and ritual
Have engineered
The violation of all Heaven.

Is there still a Mother
We can pray to?
Mother! Mother!
I still love you!

Farewell

(A translation of Lorca’s Despedida)

If I die
Leave the balcony doors open,

A young boy is eating oranges.
(From the balcony I see him)
The reaper is cutting the wheat.

(From the balcony I hear him)

If I die
Leave the balcony doors open!

The Stars Journey Home

Death is our Mother
And has shed us like stars
From the womb of darkness
We will return to Her
Not because we do not love life
But because we cannot live without Her.

There is only one Law
To calm our desire
In skies of deepest blue
Be bright one moment then expire
Our lives are briefest fire!
While She is lovely Forever!

She has always been kind to us
And will welcome us with a kiss
When we return from exile
With the map of the Universe
In our hearts for Her.
Death is our Mother.

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Afterthoughts

La Ballade charnelle du Tom Beau

Dans les nuits de Tambour
Carnavalesques
Nous avons secoué
Nos vieilles carcasses.

C’étaient des nuits chaudes
Où brillaient jais et émeraude
Au fond des yeux des Morts
Qui revenaient…

Elle était là…
Celle que j’ai toujours adorée
La Fille de Saint Sébastien
Aux rayons lumineux argentés
Qui tombaient de la lune
Un baiser sans lacune
Qu’elle a pleuré sur ma tombe
Etincellente à ses yeux
Chaque lettre de mon nom…

Les autres ils en riaient
De me voir ainsi
Avec mes brillants os de défunt squelette
Ils se moquaient de mon osseuse tête
« Arrêtez de faire la Fête !… »
Qu’ils criaient à tue-Tête…

Mais j’en avais assez de suivre ce régime
De vers… et de sanglots…
Je voulais voir autre chose
Que la vie en ruines !

Eh, bien…

J’ai toujours adoré la viande féminine
Et je la chantais quand j’étais en vie
La chantais avec mes compagnes de poésie
Ceux qui pleuraient avec leur sang
De leurs yeux déchirés !…
Aveuglés !…
Sur des autels en marbre…
A l’intérieur d’églises dévastées…
Ma damnation !…

Ce sont eux en fait qui ont signé ces versets.

Alors, toute la nuit
Nous avons épié cette fille
Celle qui nous faisait rêver…
La Fille aux yeux d’Espagne !
La Fille de Saint Sébastien !
C’est elle que tous les Morts désiraient…

La Fille de Saint Sébastien dansait…
Elle ravissait, elle captivait
Que même les Morts bougeaient
Même les Morts chantaient…

J’y reviens plus
De ce rêve de beauté…
Ah si vous aviez été là, mon semblable…
Qu’auriez-vous pu ?…
Devenu vous aussi son prisonnier ?…

Nous avons veillé toute la nuit
Afin de capter ce bel esprit !

The Love Song of Hermes T

Heaven holds him
Evenings when the autumn leaf falls
Rusted star surrendering to glistering darkness
Magical flame
Evenings when the autumn leaf falls
Slow, dark, fiery, musical… falls.

The winter begins to bite as he
Rakes together the fallen abundance from the trees
In the park making
Small but precious
Mountains of gathered leaves
Each one a swirling Klimt in colour and design
Gold for the glittering pocket of his golden mind
In his warm voice the alchemy of a song
She used to make him sing aloft along
Treasure for the boy he was
Under her heavenly gaze
She who was the love of his days, his moon at night.

Ballade solitaire

J’étais celui
Que la vie avait fui

Moi et mes rêves
Qu’elle avait détruits

Je ne pouvais plus suivre
Ni rêve ni ténèbre

Mes jours funestes
Mes nuits funèbres

Le temps n’était pas fait
Pour mes regrets

Je n’étais que chanson
Abandonnée

Je trouvais à vrai dire
L’Oiseau beau

Il était devant ma vie
Fier flambeau

Il n’était en rien étrange
Bien qu’il dérange

J’aurais aimé tout dissoudre
Sans vicissitude

J’aurais aimé de la compagnie
Bien humaine, bien rude

Mais personne ne voulait parler
A l’ancien marinier

Là où la rivière
Touche enfin à la mer.