Sunday, October 09, 2005

On mourning and the Village of Snape, Suffolk


Sorrow's dimension blinds this inward eye.
And so with mourning.
No need to mourn a refusal to fly
Towards the shuddering shoulder.

When we refuse,
it is towns, provinces,
perhaps nations,
even continents that unwind from the coil.
Yet when self elects refusal it is the infinite
that dies
As though the Universe may pass
without notice.

Bury the brittle ego, faded and obscure.
And at this seldom visited plotside
Make ego equal to the Universe
As ego and Universe seem twinned in death.

Mothers, fathers, children creeds, deeds and done-for doubts
Like worlds and wisdom

It would be as easy to launch these lines of respect disrespectfully,
by loudly announcing in beer-gravelled voice that: This village is no less blunt than a pig's fart."
But here, even such common talk would seem strangely alien.
And in its echoing about the Golden Key
would somehow in its meaning ring untrue;
if not sad at least.

Would be just as easy to scatter one's emotions
safely about the lingering lanes, between lovers, trees,
gypsy trailers, green grass and grumbling grouse;
and watch the poet's seed flourish in this haven,
where a dog's bark holds in it as much truth as
the hissing beer draughted from the tavern's bowels
where yellowed teeth and the sly knowing stare
welcomes the devil,black cats, and raven-breathed druids;
and moonlight, each day, at opening 'toime'.

Percy Ling, drunk as a rugby team shouts: "who will shake me for one?"
Every man-soul hears him and replies as one "Not me, o please not me."
Nor dog nor cat nor none.
Ah, but Percy I will shake you till the dice go rattlin To hell.
Shake you for one. Then another, if my name ain't Billy Bells.
And on your stone one day they'll write; "I'll have the same.
Make it a double."
Written in the village of Snape, circa 1978