Upon the Poet, in His 25th Year
Let it be no calmer in your hands; time enough
for the calm, the warmth and the cold in the grove – wearied now,
exhausted motions twist to suppress and rejoice; possess him fully!
and now? rapid destruction; the memories of destructive passions now doomed
to be passionless all his days.
A quarter of a century submerged, a rite of death
and a rite of birth among millions – life – so heavy, so ritualistic, pedantic normalcy.
Furies, then, stillborn irritations and nukes unleased in the heart,
beneath the mushroom cloud
smiles a spirit, turbulent and strong, snaking tentacles from endless depths.
Hands! Hands, now calm yourselves, calm and resume tired motions –
suppress and rejoice, possess him then, destroy him then, enshrine the
memories of passions, erected temples of uncalm spirits,
but visit them in passionless days.
A quarter of a century; condemned already, to choke
and growl on the pedantry of life, to ignore the great majesties and
mysteries, with all answers laid bare and naked on the sacrificial bed.
No more; to kiss the face he worshipped in his dreams;
no more; to trace those same familiar scars and scowl that age has not wearied
them beyond the points of self-inflammation.
No more; so simple! Such a normal ending, no more.
What weight those words could carry, in a more resilient
quarter of a century, in one less given to performances of anger and tears,
feeling nothing at all.
To never love again, to love no more, a degree of holy passion fading,
ascending and spiralling into the overcast midday,
a life less lived in grey-tenements and pre-fabricated chapels,
in modular churches with stony veneers.
To love no more, a lie; when all love exists in mirrors,
reflection, denial, amplification,
until all the lights do swell
and shatter and sheer,
and leave the man alone
abandoned now by the poet,
(pale, of a quiet contemplation shuddering,
a tightly-wound fury; completely possessed now
by both the alien and the familiar)
a claimant, now, of his own anger, worn,
stretched between edges cruel and unfamiliar, now a
framework of insidious designs, trapping and to punish the
poet, who fled the soul in exhaustion and disgrace,
and ended a lynch on the horizon’s solitary tree.
The cafés now, too full of mirrors, and closed doors but endless
open windows resembling television screens, and sunlight becomes
the blue light of laptops and monitors, all leading to exclamations,
to shouted screenplays in the mind –
– where cigarettes are no longer frowned upon,
– where the pills are cheap and not needed,
– where the Guinness takes minutes to pour,
– where the smiles come easy and genuine,
– where he doesn’t need to chase his own spirit
into the bottles where all the other spirits go