Noel’s Poems

Context. These are a series of poems I wrote at the start of the 2013 year looking through the portal of the Shakespearean Sonnet model, and are in one sense located in a time and place. They are very personal poems and the fascination for me of course is that they were rooted in something I was experiencing at the time. If I were to re write these poems or part of them, I would perhaps write it differently. I suppose this is one of the difficulties ever of writing something that speaks not only for a time, but speaks and can remain true enough always; as we are always shifting.

Apollo’s roost.

Cracks are essential ingredients you see,
It’s through that agency the light gets in;
And clarity lunges right out at me,
It’s only then that the journey begins.

There’s nowhere to hide and always a cringe,
Scrutiny follows in clarities wake;
The sun is relentless and always will singe,
But I’ve chosen this eerie and this is my fate.

I bare my arse upon this lofty gyre,
The spittle is turned with relentless care;
The blinding light that surely’s on fire,
Erodes as such my reticence and fear.

The gift of Apollo was always sought,
And on his lyre, serenities taught.

I have always loved this light visioned God, even though clarity is something that once gleaned, etched and articulated, is invariably dropped again; quickly it seems, as too much certainty merely repels me. It is my eternal game of hide and seek, and I have welcomed the dance to the extent now that in my mature years, I can devour Ithaca and understand its message.
It is about the journey, and always was scrutiny comes with the light, as this is what lets the light in.
I am searching and talking about the clear light of reason and clarity, yet once there, one is literally blinded, which is no vision at all, and hardly worth while aspiring to. Like Icarus, it seemed a good idea at the time, but ends up a lame option after all, or; it is merely yet again a station on the track, and not the terminus at the end.

Apollo’s roost.

The clarity that lunges out at me,
Has always stated choice is mine to make;
Yet clear vision does not always agree,
And there is always so much more at stake.

I bare my arse upon this lofty gyre,
The spittles turned with confidence and care;
The blinding light that surely catches fire,

emanates as such

scrutiny comes with the light, as this is what lets the light in.
I am searching and talking about the clear light of reason and clarity, yet once there, one is literally blinded, which is no vision at all, and hardly worth while aspiring to. Like Icarus, it seemed a good idea at the time, but ends up a lame option after all.

The slippery one (Snake).

To try to get a hold is such a test,
Reminds one of the thoughts and many fears,
Which alludes in truth to those who always jest,
Just when you think you have it clear.

The glove rolls quietly off my sleeve,
I place it gently on the table there;
And with the loss I sometimes sit and grieve,
As nakedly it engenders many fears.

Epiphany is never far behind,
The lens is cleansed and coat is glistening bright;
And you will never know what you will find,
As with the loss you also gain insight.

But beware though the forked one speaks so close,
And transformation can seem such a ghost.

The trickster and trying to articulate or reach for the impossible, courting danger with such beauty and form is so seductive, yet one always remains wary. It is the knife edge that one walks, the tightrope of joy. It strikes with impunity at times, yet is always slithering beyond ones gasp. It also is the one that breaks the barriers and the boundaries, and thus is always feared. In many ways, one does not have a choice. The snake is always there; whispering and prodding one on, and even though we are all aware of the game and the rules, and thus consequences; we are entreated to join in and play. To not enter the dance seems such a waste really and life passes by, slithering to another space; someone else’s space that is.
And we don’t wish that on anyone do we?

Doggerel

The shanks, the tail, the head are firmly there,
The squirt marks reach into my furthered space;
I’m held within a deft and challenged dare,
Yet boundaries hold me carefully with grace.

The territorial space is opened wide,
Its reach is quietly manufacturing fear;
Yet from that space I cannot run and hide,
So ardours felt and I am left to dare.

There is a boon that comes within your grace,
The hold is gentle yet is very clear;
This lusty gift that juts into my face,
And in the end there is no need to fear.

The gates are flung out open and so wide,
And all my fears are taken (shaken), in their stride.

And when I think of this sonnet, it is almost a visitation more than anything, that comes to me, requesting, beseeching, drawing in the beloved as with a net, as I and the other are assuredly one. It was always thus. My sonnet on the dog is really about the push and the pull, and the boundary marker being an open space, not closed.
I want to also allude to the sexual rawness of contact that the dog gives, as well as the warm embrace of the fuck. There is territory there, and fear of course with the vagina with teeth, but it is still home territory.

Arboreal sonnet.

The fork that deviates wholly right there,
Its fluid motion craftily resists;
And senses purpose readily with care,
As tension holds it firmly in it’s fist.

But letting go has never been so hard,
And once the bough has stripped itself and fled;
As all the time it clung as though on guard,
Leaves weeping pores that never seem to bleed.

The line that seeks a purpose way up there,
Is un encumbered and is reaching out;
Continues seeking sun and lofty wares,
With newfound freedom it can sing and shout.

It’s hard to reconcile a loss like this,
Yet always compensation comes as bliss.

This sonnet is about letting go and pruning, which ironically, when done, actually liberates one. I chose the arboreal title due to the intimacy of the arbour, and the association with intimacy and retreat. Yet within this, one must be prepared to prune and edit, as that is where the growth comes, not isolation and denial which ironically sets in the slow death; entropy.

Aqueous.

Fear of the water is spurned by the few,
Drowning by numbers is quoted so fast,
Immersion is something that changes one view;
The hard headed realists hangs onto the mast.

The rhythmed water will ebb and flow,
I’ve fought with the rips that have severed my being,
(Controlling the waters was Canute’s dream).
But here is the way that my life goes,
Yet on the way back, things are not what they seem.

My thoughts are so fluid they’re often aloft,
And glue is like water, which holds you so fast;
Resting ones head on a pillow so soft,
And struggle is so futile, I say with a gasp.

And everything’s easy for a while at last,
The rudders essential, but so is the mast.

I think that with this sonnet, I have struggled with the essential thinking, being on of struggle, but also shape, form, but also stricture. Mind you, this has also been the story of my life so there really should be no surprise at all in any of this.

Angel (Icarus).

You see the wings float airily back there,
It titillates my needs and makes me real;
I’ve always known a presence holding fear,
So in my grasp this birth I really feel.

Incarnation brings such lofty seeds
No flicker now but steadily beating wings;
Which taps into my psyche and its needs,
And my whole being ripples with its sting.

The wound I’ve gained in weeping on its pyre
It festers and presents itself with ease;
And buzzards sweep so easily the sky,
And pick and chew, yet halt this dread disease.

My shoulders twitch and ache this new disease,
Although still down, they’ll grow and set me free.

The visitation that is always afforded to a sentient being. That space that Rilke alluded to where the interface happens. Spirit and matter both tryst in this fertile space that offers so much. It is the true pregnant space that artists reach for, as this is where ‘the light gets in’.

Ithaca.

I’ve traversed this road forever it seems
I’ve come to the centre from such a long walk;
Cracks lying within its mortar I glean,
The perspective at times is incredibly short.

I remember the warning to keep to the path,
Making quite sure that I gather the boon;
Adrianne’s cawl is gathered so quick,
What’s seen as light is quite often gloom.

Lying and dying are two peas in a pod,
Security offers us far too much space,
By travelling onwards we’re offered a Prod,
And Ithaca’s only a one legged race.

The weariness comes in the middle of the path,
The endings ideally a new way to start.

When I reflect upon the road, I am always reminded of the journey and not the destination, and the fact is, that is is the interesting stuff along the way that really attracts and perhaps always should. After all; the lesson of Ithaca is that when you reach the end, you do not have time to reflect; as it is a state of being, and then you move on again, albeit in a different vehicle this time.


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