"We shall not cease from exploration and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started
and know the place for the first time." (T S Eliot)
"A dark and chanted verse is what I am." (
Forough Farrokhzad)

Monday, September 29, 2014

SCAFFOLD

My first blunder was to believe the lie.
Then I put my faith in false promises
And acted as though I was insane,
Doing the same things over and over again
And expecting their forecasts to comply.

I pushed and pulled and lifted and strained,
My heart and head and shoulders stooped
And my focus so singleminded
That I could be seen as blinded,
So I did not know that I was chained.

The blood that I gave was spilled with good will
And that makes me even more bitter.
When they wanted someone to blame
I did not expect the wave of shame
As they lumped me with the corporate swill.

My efforts and dedication made people rich
Yet I did not feel exploited by them.
I always thought my rewards would come
And trusted too much in those who were scum
For none tried to rescue me from Satan’s ditch.

Almost four decades without a blemish or error,
Utmost application and diligence.
But I missed one criminal’s scheme,
Though I never joined his larcenous team,
And then the pretenders unleashed the terror.

The gallows to which I am nailed have me baffled,
Dissembled rather than assembled by the fears
Of those who never make their own mistakes
And never rise beyond the status of fakes.
Only death can save me from my scaffold.


Friday, September 26, 2014

PHUKET

Blue sky days brimmed full of sights
Burning bright like the torches
That lit the temple porches.
Together we travelled the island
To and fro,
Climbed hills and stood still
Enough to see the sea’s azure dapples
And dazzling flares of flower petals
Amongst the scenery’s greenery.
We gave some time to gentle faith,
Bowing to Buddha
And somehow winning merit.
Tamed but also troubled by his teaching -
Wisdom from a man revered
And apparently not to be feared.


Too quickly the days that amazed
Began to prepare us for rest.
The sun slipped into the Andaman Sea
Without spilling a drop but sizzling hot.
Tropical dark fell fast like a pantomime curtain.
But the air stayed heat-ridden and steamy,
Wet with wetness from rain that never came.
The lights of bars blocked out the stars
And unlocked passion pits of pleasures paraded,
Frail youth and gender masqueraded
And innocence frayed and faded.
The seedy preyed upon the needy
In a paradise that surely deserved better.
Unless it was the other way round,
As sometimes it seemed to be.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

ROTTEN FRUIT


There is no crime in a pretty green world
Victims deserve their plight as if it's fate
And hearts broken by monsters' evil minds
Can be ignored or urged to wipe the slate.


It seems we lurched from black and white and truth
To monochrome pictures and blurred visions,
Traded our righteous rage for urbane doubts
And took ourselves out of all decisions.


The certain few are bound to call our bluff,
Powered by prophets of fruit gone rotten,
As we die in our hapless lack of trust,
Severed heads symbolise faith forgotten.


Wednesday, September 24, 2014

SHADOWS OF SATURDAY

The shade of a late afternoon always
Takes me back to Saturdays and football -
Long shapes stretched across an oval’s spaces
Moving ahead like waves to a sea wall.
Then I recall the odor of damp grass
And pungent mud from winter’s rainy days.
There’s also the sweet smell of woody fires -
Smoke drifts across the sunlight in a haze.
The crowd was always restless and full voiced
As the home team ran out of time to win,
Three deep they'd bend as players crossed sidelines,
Corrugating like an old roof of tin.
Soon came the final bell’s stoic applause,
Shadows vanished to find another cause.


Wednesday, September 17, 2014

THE SPELL OF TIME

And there were no more leagues to leave behind
When I first saw the spell of time subside
In the rough rush of happy crowds and touts.
Then you immersed me in your rising tide.
Arrived, we dived into the warm waters
Where mermaids scaled shimmering sunlight’s shafts,
And shellfish shined in pastel pearl parades,
While we conversed in secret codes and laughs.
The days flew by like sea birds seeking feasts,
Sweet nights almost wasted and dogged by dreams,
And yet our hours could be lazy phases,
Each minute stretched and stitchless at its seams.
Now I pray months of wait and hope contract
And ages pass so future leaps to fact.