Some songs escaping

Yawning and singing. Swish of tiered long bright blue water skirt. Sharply drawn face with seeing ink eyes. Black hoody teeming with white stars. Hands fly to the face and a quietened coaxing, murmur shuffle of minute dawn birds – some songs escaping.

————————

Creative sketch of woman on train platform.

Advertisements
Posted in poems | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Support

Waking, I notice

A space by my face,

I know today you’ll

Visit your friend

Who struggles to live,

Far, across cement, crowds,

Sweat and wires, you’ll

Tread to sit in a

Room of smoke and magnolia.

Watching, waiting.

We disagree on almost

All strategies.

Our minds stretch strong

Move in a million different ways.

What would I do if

Something happened to you?

In a blink, the train

To another station arrives.

I will get on a plane,

To see her.

I don’t want to see her.

Wax-like, cocooned in tubes.

But it’s not her

Who wants to see me,

The months keep them toiling,

People keeping her alive.

For the living,

I will murmur to the fading tiger.

For the living I will

Appear in the flesh,

Cook, sing and write.

———————-

Written some weeks ago when deciding to go on a long distance flight to see my grandma who is breathing, but in a very deep sleep. I couldn’t go earlier because of health reasons. Then I noticed a reluctance to go. I think it’s because something really melodramatic and tragic happened previously for us in August and so a) I wish people would stop dying in August and b) a desire to remain detached from the exhausting chaotic entanglement of severe emotional strain, practicalities and strategy.

Anyway, I did go and found space-holding good, talked to my grandma (hoping and imagining she can hear us) and also took a bunch of pics and films. It felt like she wanted me to go on a family trip / journey away from home..

Posted in poems | Leave a comment

A Flying Cinema

A little bit of me dies ⬇️every time I have an airport search. Luckily, my ghost 👻 later basks in geeking out, watched 20 + trailers to pick the best films (for me at least!) to float in for the ride. Moods: dreamy, desolate, darkhumour, fairytale, myth, enigmatic, fantasy.

1. “Timecode” (Dir. J. Giménez Peña, 2016). 2 carpark security guards who work different shifts and barely speak to each other start leave messages (in dance – captured on CCTV) for each other in this tantalising short.

2. Then I listened to “The Very Best of Charles Mingus” (2001, 1hr 16m 13s). An alluring tapestry of fervour and mystery.

3. “The Breadwinner” (Dir. Twomey, 2017) “Stories remains in our hearts when all else is gone.” In this mesmerising animation, a young girl pretends to be a boy to help her family survive in Kabul when her father is wrongfully imprisoned.

4. “The White Girl” (J. Suen / C. Doyle). Initially, I was a little confused by the title! Dir. Jenny Suen introduces her film as “TropicalNoir” 🌴💀 which may be my new fav genre. In “the last fishing village of Hong Kong”, a socially ostracised teenage girl warbles along to a vintage Chinese pop song on a portable tape player. The singer is her absent mum, a former beauty queen whose silky negligee she’s wearing with long pearls + knee-high wellies. Her widowed fisherman dad mainly grunts at her to “bring him beer”. A poetic stranger appears in the form of an Adrien Brody/ Hipster dude who starts inhabiting the mysterious ruin at the top of the hill. A small boy selling mosquito cones and a sagacious goggled inventor monk carefully inspect the motives of the village chief…

5. “Min Börda” (Dir. Niki Lindroth von Bahr, 2017, 14m 25s). Weird, animated, darkly funny musical “extravaganza”. From the depressed hotel fish in dressing gowns to the other anthropomorphic characters who are revealed in sly ways as the music opens for each absurd pageant.

6. “Still on the Bridge” (Johnnie To). A widower sells candy on the street without a vending license. He corrects a friend’s assumption that he can read English, explaining that he’s got English newspapers on his stand because they are “better for soaking up moisture”. An intimate glimpse into a person’s life, social commentary with the lonely wail of reverb guitar.

7. “Fish Out of Water” (Johnnie To. 19m 54s). NB there are several films with this title. Disruption. Industrialisation. When words might be inadequate to express the destabilising effect of a changing way of life, the body strives to make itself be noticed and understood. Ironically, my viewing of this film was constantly interrupted by airplane announcements as we were landing….. 👟👟🏙

Posted in comments, poems, trails, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Silver

Magpies

Magpies

In my room,

Tried to steal

My jar of tears..

Too heavy

They left.

—–

Magpies

Magpies

In my room,

Tried to steal

My jar of sweat..

Too light

They left.

—–

Magpies

Magpies

In my room,

Tried to steal

My jar of blood..

Too deep

They left.

—–

Magpies

Magpies

In my room,

Tried to steal

My jar of words..

Tomorrow

We feast.

Posted in poems | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Sweet, Salt, Storied (portrait of a tree)

Some years ago, I noticed your branches..
sweet, salt, storied..

on a road to the sea, we drifted unbound
(your leaves spoke with the breeze)..

over the miles,
seeds shared,
sky sprinkled with
ice cream and coffee revelations..

in months your roots
swim slow in grim,
winter Essex clay..

today I hear you
speak in songs and

through my hands
I see you

ablaze with fruit.

Posted in poems, Stories | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Snake in a tree

I saw a snake in a tree, pretending to be a bird.

Lightning struck but the bird flew.

I heard a cave in the armpit of a giant.

Singing with sweat, while poison dust flew.

I tasted the shadow of a mystery in a cake shop.

Shaped like a crown, the pearls fell before swine.

I attacked the sun, and the sky punched me back!

I changed my scales and the weather didn’t throw me a backward glance.

I lunched with laughter and dined on despair.

Like magical curtains, free water flows from eyes and skies.

—————–

.

.

.

.

.

Writer Reflections:

Haha! Finally a form which doesn’t matter that I can’t format it on a computer.

The bittersweet sound of success (head-banging gently on table or a toy vehicle repeatedly driving into a shoe).

The form is a statement followed by an answering detail.

The pattern breaks at “I attacked the sun” and “I changed my scales” (I just edited a video for my piece “Baby Dragon” yesterday).

Then back to one more statement and answer.

Posted in poems | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

I’m sorry, son

I’m sorry, son,
For the pain I caused you both.
That day I heard
Siren moonlight in the woods,
Later, knee-deep
In tantalising quicksand,
I even wished
To add you to our new life.

One night I crawled
Back, weary for quietude.
Frightened, you ran
To her bed, waking with words,
“Who is that man
In my room?” She takes a breath,
“It’s your father.”
Questions spin within your dreams.

Belonging craves,
Deep pressures pulled me apart,
Pieces of me
Wandered in bright illusions,
Longing for that
Ever elusive feeling –
Fulfilment and
The quest to harmonise doubt.

Gradually..
The glamour crumbled away,
I drove gladly,
Desiring my family.
It took me years,
To perceive the damage caused,
As I arrived,
To a wholly different home.

 


 

Some reflections with a query… (scroll to the end for the query)

I used 4 syllables than 7 syllables throughout this poem. I tend to open the poem and then try to continue the “beat” or syllable idea. The mismatch between the length of the syllables of the alternating lines further conveys the idea of disparity (aspirations, age, realities, experiences etc).

I used to struggle with tense. Although a native English speaker, I am sometimes caught wondering whether what I want to say is most effectively presented in the past or present (or some other tense). Here, I go for past mainly, however, I used present in the middle. I did this spontaneously in the flow of writing and think it is because it gives that part a different feel.

Using italics for the 3rd stanza seems to give not just that stanza that distant/ slightly nostalgic tone (which I associate with italics) but also the last verse seems “gentler” (?) than it did before I added the italics..

What do you think.. is it better with or without the italics?

Posted in poems | Tagged , , | Leave a comment