Changes, Days, Lives



 photo: Sarah Longlands



Index of titles and first lines


A life divided Some expression of a cause / in the wearing out of day, / the road laid out which few / would take: through double-doors

A world? Or some inversion of a world? A world? Or some inversion / of a world? Greatest depths / flow out in free dispersion

Brief, so brief Brief, so brief, / swift as last-light / on a northward wall

Can’t talk much— Can’t talk much // Nowhere, ‘here I’m safe’, / for habiliaments of self are in themselves unsettling-

Changes, days, lives A long road in a place I do not know; / the day is wearing, origins grow dark / the mind keeps close those slender thoughts which grow

Day journey, night journey Day journey, night journey, / element of travel in the shaping / of the personal upon the mind

Embodied only at the gate Part follows the sun and the moon; / Part is slow, and cold in the earth

Ethos of the age Light coming on the plain / and the dimming of the stars, / balancing. Roads come clear

Far-travelled thought grows cold Signature of remoteness- / far-travelled thought grows cold / writing the one event / amid this aftermath

Given world Given world / millstone sky / olive noon / August day.
In the plain of light Unconscious irony / imparts the sense; / the unbodied hand / writes on the wall // in the plain of light / at every juror's sight

It guides as an insight In the long loosening of form / a pathway goes beyond the guessing.

Knot in the road Knot in the road; / a night-knot

Mood as a plain Mood as a plain, mute / rising quickly to the hills

‘Name, loose held’ Name, loose held. / Lone and unbound day

Night dialogue Awakening at night a line / of words hangs in the mind / as though a dialogue, begun / in sleep, and sleep-defined // had paused

No sense of speed Between unknowns, / the single day; / no sense / of speed

Persona Linear hour / lays out the road. / Blank familiar / falls away in sight

‘Qualities held by hands of words’ Qualities / held by the hands of words / negatives / raising up where speech falls short

Sentience Over stone and into pool / each rill’s purling is as full / of local cadence as a brain

Summer night In the page of a night's life / an elongation of a thought / within a dark. / The clink / of a goat’s chain

Text on a Moorish fountain Standing wave / in a flow’s thought / rests upon an origin

The boundary, never to be crossed The boundary, never to be crossed / goes always with me: the walk away / cannot be done

‘The echoic world beyond’ The echoic world beyond / the window's high arch / one hand on each sash-case

The inverted vault of character Steep-sided lake between the hills / a trait of character

The prevailing purview of the seasons The prevailing purview of the seasons / in the landward turning of the bush

‘The senses change with hours’ The senses change with hours. Sight, now / where once I could not see a thing, no hand / before no face

‘The future thing against a sky’ The future thing against a sky / in motion and an edge, pulls / as a long desire, the sense of self

‘The voice of praise’ The voice of praise / diminishes another

The words come The words come / as a full grey sky / above the towns / unseen before the day

‘Two darks, one night, open eyes’ Two darks, one night, open eyes, / an ochre moon that, heavy, widens as it wanes

‘Understated’ Understated / muted / all stopped down. / Epitomized

Walking away He wakens, / mornings, / on a heath, // mornings, /in a cell

‘What I said was heard’ What I said was heard: / for there was no echo

Where? Stable sight. Maybe. Not here, / but in a franker mode of time / where all that is, is sensed

‘Where the roads fork’Where the roads fork / sentiences grow - / a moment's baulk / beneath the spread of leaves


eleven of these poems are presented here:
click the underlined titles





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