Friday, 9 October 2020

A MACKEREL SKY

 

To start with this post here are four lines I wrote yesterday [in my head] while driving to the shops.

the boat will not set sail today

the waves run too high

a slowly rising red sun

into a mackerel sky

 Originally I wrote herringbone sky but on checking the phrase appears to be mackerel sky. I will leave you to decide which is the more effective. 

Now a revised poem. When I showed this to the Secret Poets there was a general agreement that the poem could not decide what it was saying. I hope this revision makes that clearer.

MAPS

On wet days, before he truly went blind,

my father in half moon spectacles,

would get down his maps,

unfold them on the kitchen table,

his fat finger tracing familiar trails,

he would one day take,

over this mountain, across that moor.

He talked the big picture but noted the details,

in the crevasses of the folds.

I dreamt my own dreams.


The end they said, was a cigarette,

of course I arrived too late,

after the fire, those all consuming flames

that ate my father and his rooms.

The day after I raked through the ash,

not expecting to find anything

and I did not.


These days I use a phone screen,

reduced to letting an algorithm to dictate my route,

which takes no note of altitude or contour,

battle site, henge or tumuli.


This poem is now being put away, for a goodly amount of time. When it is looked at again, in however many months, I am sure it will highlight its own flaws.
I recently bought an LP by Aziza Brahim on spec and it has proven to be excellent. 
Here she is singing Hajad Jll.

Until the next time.

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