I have spent half my life Looking how I was wanted to be seen Powdered to the tip of my nose Accurately thin With anklets on my feet That laughed alone in night And a locket round my neck Buried out of sight I had flowers on my frocks When I was a lotus bud soft pink And roses in my hair locks When I was allowed to think As if my beauty was just a face Without a wish or voice As if being born the way I was Had something to do with choice If only I could have told them then The thoughts I had in my mind Of my mantelpiece existence Of being beautiful but kept blind Alone as my own mirror Echoing solitude Days spent dressed for the world to wonder And nights being ashamed to be nude
All I can think about is dust and dusk And drowning in a shattered sea Made of glass Like a photograph of a falling man Who is never truly falling But eternally trapped With a suspended scream In an endless dream Like a dreamless wraith; Weightless and wordless As an orphan in death
But sometimes the night is too strong for me to sleep And the dreams I have are too dark for me to keep So I become a cobweb on the far wall Or a three pin plug lost in a socket Some crumpled paper on the floor Or a faded face in an old heart shaped locket A catharsis of cause Building prisons to be free An empty ship sailing An emptier sea
Where there is fog in the air And yet I stare Like a blind man blinking Without thinking at the sky Wondering in my own vacuum About the mute purpose of ‘Why’ With voices at the edge of my vision And footsteps at the back of my mind I am dreaming of being asleep And afraid of losing what I cannot find
Thus, in this black and white world In this sharp and smooth world In this loud and quiet world In this bitter and sweet world In this dull and fragrant world I shall remain awake Till a different tomorrow
I was born out of the blue Like a star without a face And shall one day be falling too As dust without a trace In hope that when I am gone Those very few whom I knew Kept something of the light With which their wish came true…
I wait at the newspaper stand Reading, the morning is grey Ash tinted Like an old man’s asthma
Buds of people are sprouting From windows and eggshell alleyways Dressed in yesterday’s dreams And tommorow’s promises Faces creased, bespectacled With white hairs a halo From the century long sunlight Age ever ached to swallow
A ballad pours from the the barbershop The old stereo is crooning about Footsteps falling on azure fields And carts on country roads I can smell the aftershave At once bitter and sweet The razor once again vacant Without the borrowed heartbeat
There is a fallacy here Between the words and vision I read and see The stories seem vibrant but life colour-free Perhaps it is the weight of being That makes it so For all of us do wither But only some of us grow
The children have gathered on the footpath A bell in some temple tolls The priests are praying for bliss And in laughter a football rolls I watch, I watch The world divided in unison Each hour be day or night Being a part of every season
So I pay my fair share It’s time for me to leave And be one amongst the masses Who in eternity believe Of everyday man and their everyday deeds In the cycle of fruit from the flower and flower from the seeds If only one would question; Does the roots if ever know? Of the world that blooms outside from their breaths buried below
To speak Without being heard With words like wind Asleep in windchimes, To be far away, breathing in a distant past dyed sepia and smelling of crushed leaves: The aroma of time dried through the ages, To taste a fruit away from the tongue And let it linger in a seedless ecstasy On each pair of lips In every burnished breath between the lungs To weave sunlight In the skin of dewdrops And bare a rainbow upon the floor Brought home to a full circle To smile at the madness of it all And mean it in the mirror of mind Grassroots enveloping Memories I cannot find Now leads me to believe That life with all its thorns and petals Is more in the act of living Than waiting for it to settle
Forlorn face Hollow heart Granite grace And me Together we Are falling apart Like shadow of the tree And though they make a single sound All leaves are not the same The sky is blue But never new And memories; They have no name
My bed is in the corner Of an empty room The irony is self imposed But not without reason I have heard that darkness Gathers more in the deep And perhaps it shall help me sleep Faster than dying by lying wide awake Counting seconds, falling and rising With time’s unreceding tide.
The curtain hanging by my bedside Often flutters in the night And it’s breath though purposeless Fills me with envy By it’s act of pure motion Sans a shred of emotion How can I be more than me When everything I seek I deny to see?
Dreams; they die, my own are no exception Even when I have them Caged behind a glass case Cuddled in red velvet Caressed by Mozart’s Sonatas The flowers shall wilt, roots die and fruits decay Nature by nature of unrequitance Shall swallow none but one’s own For birds do not nest on trees unsown And those that I watch from the moonlit window They shimmer and shine Like gold and wine Broken; yes and crooked and white But they know unlike me the taste of sunlight.
I can hear the roots tear Across the breast of resting soil Like blind fingers, stretching the Depths of darkness, Those long forgotten by time For the hours; they fly only above the ground The black womb is all silence And frozen thoughts: Except those murmurs of memories Left by faded footsteps And shadows parched under the sun Of people who could not turn, away. I hear them too, their thoughts, In the leaves yawning with the wind And fruits falling with the same It’s bittersweet syrup; tears and sweat of toil gone unremembered A destiny dismembered Like roots they yearn no reason Nor do they desire The crystal sunlight reserved for carving men All that is needed for the flower to bloom And the fruit to bubble without bursting Is this truth soaked with pain That they stand alive and upright On the shoulders of hanging men