The landscape spread before us & danced, twisted into
such beauty;
                        it yearned to be a poem –
it wanted to travel with me,
& in me,
& witness for itself,
its own beauties when
compared to the streets
dead-ends, dark houses & stagnant
cathedrals still clinging to my spine;
the keenness of it all, the promiscuity of the world
turned me off, then & there –

 – I have never loved
                                     those whose bodies
                                     are naturally the bodies of muses,
                                     as I have never loved a mountain
                                     for its size, or an ocean,
                                                                                 for its endlessness –

– I have never truly loved
a natural muse, & those who struggle
and fight and work to make their bodies
the bodies of muses
are charlatans;
                           like the rest of us.
                                                            We misunderstand the
meaning of muses & we’re all dreaming
of angels.

I envy the landscape poets, like I envy the artists who shudder to capture a scene in their art. I have never been able to capture a truly beautiful landscape; they are beyond me, too large for one weak man’s imitation. Had I a full workshop, with a dozens poets working on some great masterpiece, I might be able to present one moment of the world; one scene in perfect stillness or alive with the thunderous joy of simply being alive, with eyes stretched out to see the beauty of light on dark scenes.

Every landscape I have seen now stands as a testament to my failures – like the great game hunters, I assume the living mock me for running out of bullets and ink so early in the day. No heads of trees, or bodies of rivers stand in my hall as a testament to my skill as a tracker, or my precision with a rifle. I envy the landscape poets, who can see so clearly and so intimately over such a large scale when I, inevitably, fail and fail and fail again.

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Carey Poet

Working Still Life Classes

I don’t want my depressions taken
from me – taken too seriously;
rather fodder for endless jokes &
no hatreds revealed
but rage & rats cause bitter smiles to blossom
into joyous things;

On the Bird’s Wings

I find it impossible to write you poetry;
dense, leaden, eyes like mine that strain

Showing Off The Furnace (Dream 14)

I dreamed that I walked in the ashes of the Third World War. I’d taken up smoking as soon as the first missile flew and Ireland split apart to reveal the children of a special friendship that went a little too far and a thousand primed heads pointed towards the moon....

Kingfisher III

I am too weak now
to push the broken shells
away from my bed
so I sleep
in the bodies of our children
& dream of what they could have been