Or wait?

When dampened ambition wanders aimlessly in sombre dreams, pursued by hallucination, consternation on its brow, dark thoughts invading aching minds,

will we stamp, dress in falsehoods, denial and blue light, scream it was never so before, anoint ourselves with indignation, become restless and uneased?

Or will we listen to the earth,
offer what we can, and simply wait?

When strong friends turn inward,
holding grief like a missing child in arms, rocking through the days, repeating self-affirming words without conviction, crying for lost loves in the night,

will we unhitch two metre swords, armour up in mask and gloves as if to run the rascal through, dancing with our glancing blade to music from slippery silver tongues, rage flashing in our eyes?

Or will we listen to the earth,
offer what we can, and simply wait?

Wait

One pulled out an iPhone,
showed photos to Another-
a car, a cat, a garden gnome:
no consequence to Either.

Other talked incessantly
whilst staring straight ahead,
Not even feigning interest
in anything One said.

Two talked with animation,
their voices harsh and shrill,
No pause for contemplation,
they had a void to fill.

The muzak wraps around us
and the colours pin our eyes,
and we’ve almost lost our bearings
in a sea of empty lies.

But halfway through an outburst,
Partway through a word,
Quietly, in the cosmos
Something waits there, to be heard…

Finger Exercise

Ten fingers strive to exercise a mundane task,
enslaved by hands, their jealous masters, clasping fast
till aching knuckles buckle to the bracelet of the day.

You’d guess they’d ask (above the crack of whip) how so
that they who long to dance, are pinioned tight and must
suspend their joy for subsistence, impinged by stress.

But never did these fingers speak; suffice to know
how noble words and careful deeds and soulful breath
held checked, cut in to scintillate with dazzling display.

Waiting to be Famous

Outside respective doors, we coffee-sip,
waiting for our ships to come in.
When they arrive, we’ll give up the day job
and money will be no matter.

We’ll squat in fame, like cuckoos,
whilst our years play knock and run at
Europe’s door.
You will make a point of shaking hands
with Lenny the Lion at celebrity parties,
and I will pay Frank Bough to buy me a drink.

Between autographs, we’ll play Canasta
with the Wing Commander, take the French X Factor
by storm, and bang it all out on a laptop,
-sure to be a hit!

I’ll leave first, because I always beat you,
and you’ll retire to Dunmow, marry a moll,
and for fame’s sake “Kiss the bride!”

Cake

Let’s do it while the early light is pale and cold,

when our soft and slippered feet still ache with sleep,

before the awesome day grows in its wisdom, old,

and we no longer can each other’s company keep,

I’ll go down stairs and turn the oven hot and high,

mix sweet with cocoa, rich with buttered love,

you follow, rubbing sleep from night time eyes,

drawn by morning’s promise from the room above,

we’ll sit together with our cups of steaming tea,

til when we feel the waiting world can’t do us harm,

with half a chocolate cake for you, and half for me,

a slice of happiness to keep us safe and warm.

For those who wait

When it is time
quiet and easy I’ll draw near
perhaps to our secret place
in playful echoes of the old bridge?
or shall we spill into silver waves?
perform shadow dances for a pink goodnight?

If the beastly fire will not be lit for now
if lights are dim and cruel time rattles
draw up a comfy chair, find a kinder place
I’ll not forget, so rest and don’t you fret
it simply isn’t time

not yet, not just yet.