I raise my weary head and look about me in puzzlement. How did I get here? Shaking the vestiges of much-craved sleep from my fruitful, crowded brain, I try to rouse my intellect, only to be informed that she is still abed, curled up in her red satin pyjama bottoms and black t-shirt, dreaming a foreign landscape; exploring, sighing after long-lost loves, swimming in pools of deep ebony emotion, and leaping ever higher to escape the rising tide of wakefulness that threatens her peaceable drift.
I am an island, spinning in the pacific blue of my own unconscious, washing the sand from my shores with tides of ink. Self-exploration that uncovers freshwater pools, icy-cold and clearer than crystal, more sparkly than rose quartz and twice as gentle; these foray-expeditions within the psyche bring back pearls of wisdom, grey and severely serious, gems of longing, beautiful and dark, and a hidden persona who rarely reigns with a free hand.
Your arms no longer bind me, your feet do not find me, yet still I seek you in my dreams. What is it I am looking for? I fear I no longer know.
Banter in an aeroplane
Twixt captain and his crew
Is rarely e’er a good idea
When piloting’s to do.
The trials of long underwear
There was a young lass from Dumfries
Whose girdle came down to her knees
When asked how she walked
The lass only squawked
“Oh, I get around, if you please!” On neglect of a significant other A love left his lass all alone
While round the town he chose to roam
The pretty young crumpet
Soon turned to a strumpet
Now he’s the one she leaves at home.
The song of the seasons
When maiden sighs ‘mid grasses long
Her lover she would lure
But when the snow is on the ground
Our lass is not so sure.
Amidst the McFlurry
Of Yanks in a hurry
One constant does spring to mind
The bigger they come
The harder they step
On your toes, I tend to find.
Oh give me once more my time again
That I might use it better
There’s so much more I would like to do
Not follow the law to the letter
I’d love to dance on a windy shore
Swim naked in the sea
Make passionate love to you once more
Take full-fat milk in my tea.
I never again would refuse to fight
For fear of what I’d lose
But into battle would march – with might
To wound, not just to bruise.
I’d see all colours in their true forms
Not fudge equality
And I’d laugh at any who chose to scorn
The way my life would be.
Yes, give me once more my time again
I know I’ve more to give!
That I might share all the love and the pain
That comes with learning to live.
I long to recapture those halcyon days
Of spirit so wild and free
Where all of the world to me was a maze
And my only loves for thee.
But now I am older and jaded too
No more have I leave to roam.
And like a chattel am bolted down
To job, and hearth, and home.
Oh, how might I relive my days long gone
And change what deeds I could
That I might achieve what I’ve never done
As well as “being good”.
I’d not be so clever – not all of the time
Nor do what I know is right.
But talk back to those who put me down
And stand up to all in a fight.
Show what love I wanted, and share
With those who did not me deserve.
Not tiptoe for fear of igniting those
Whose tempers they should curb.
I’d laugh at the fools and sing to the moon
And dance with my skirts held high.
I’d act to all like a merry loon
Who does not fear to die.
These were written separately, but I have decided to group them together due to content, so please excuse any repetition of imagery or metaphor.
Lying quietly, facing the ceiling, I contemplate the beauty of this sterile, stucco’d upside-down world. Perfection in uselessness, barren space, wasted tidiness. Grey serenity in the early-evening light, and I am cleansed of the day’s worries. The clutter of my brain seeping out and floating downward to pool around my ankles while I gaze in wonder at the splendour of light playing across a clean surface.
I could be happy up there, living on the ceiling. I’d bathe my hands in the cool basin of the light-shade and sigh at the barren beauty of my upside-down world. The bookshelves would give me ready access to all those hard-to-reach, top-shelf titles, now brought down to my level by happenstance and made accessible to me. I would stretch languorously, revelling in the space about my arms, then sprawl across the ceiling, shaking a dusty tome upwards towards the carpet. I could sigh, long and loud, then spend the day within my mind. Minus the distractions of chores – no hoovering, no dusting, no washing up, and I’d be free.
I feel your pain, weeping gently, constantly, into your bindings. Victims of your own piteous circumstance. A slave to environment, with never a cross word, but ever one to bear; and I am moved by pity. I would dry your tears, soothe your pain, ease your burden and wish you whole again.
Dancing around the bedroom in my pyjamas I pause to pirouette, feeling the scrape of the carpet, crumb-covered, beneath the ball of my blister-blighted foot, and I am beautiful. Without makeup, without mirrors, with no one to look at me or to stroke my ever-hungry ego, I breathe in the stale, book-dusty air, hear the tinny music of the radio, spy your socks on the floor, and, tutting to myself, march proudly onward to face the morning.