Verse

Too much rosé


“I’m Taking a year off to head Downsouth,

to be by the ocean and collect my thoughts.”

 

“That is so lovely, I wish I could do the same thing. You really deserve it.”

 

“I just want to step away from the circle

to kind of, deconstruct myself, you know.

Because lately, I’ve felt like most of myself

is borrowed.”

 

“I know, I know- my sister’s friend did a similar thing up in the mountains

and she came back radiant.

Now she makes jewellery and its

going really well. I’m happy for you,

this is so exciting.”

 

“Yes, it is.”
.
After three months of drinking the sweet South,

where at nine in the evening

your options are to sleep

or water the white anthuriums,

a rosé in hand

half-listening to a voice documentary

about Syria (to keep informed)

and the racket of crickets (to keep going on).

In either case, there is only one option for the view: the grand night of ocean sounds, serious stars and coconut palms.

This full-circle view for the last ninety two nights is now cut into the back of my eyes;

and in my long sleeps there was only one dream that I had-

long palms and white stars that swum drunk in a pink sea mass.

 

If at nine o’clock in the evening,

while you are watering white anthuriums

in the seaside South

with a rosé in hand,

you find yourself wondering

‘Now what?’,

clearly, happiness is a semblance.

                                   

Marjorie Content

Image – Marjorie Content, Anthurium, Gelatin-silver print, 1931

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Sonder

What kills men

There is a man next door,

paid to watch an empty land in Colombo-4;

It’s big enough, city enough to make his master rich.

He sits there all day watching over Marine Drive

and the ocean rolled different blues one after the other.

 

The first week I saw him, framed by my balcony door,

up at quarter to seven,

strutting out straight,

shaved, hair combed, shirt ironed and cigarette in hand-

a man with a mission.

He sat on his throne,

and his gaze cut through the salt dragging down the air

sharp and certain like a bone.

 

A full moon came and went,

and the wind direction changed,

so the clouds

left west.

And, the ocean rolled more blues.

 

Yesterday, I looked closer at his side profile,

while he sat centred precise between

the land’s end and Marine Drive.

 

He was mostly dead.

His chair was plastic and dusty.

His gaze hung limp like noon leaves. And he

was mostly dissolved in sea.

His cigarette was the only thing breathing.

 

My god, I think,

it’s not guns that kill men – not like this.

I must give him a pack

and a book

because dead men are terrible things

to live next to.

              

image

Image by Matt Frantz

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Verse

Making things up

It’s remarkable

how far we go

to make glorious, memorable dust.

It’s incredible how much we give

to feel big enough to laugh,

for an arrangement worth saving

pixels for a while.

It’s funny -in a very broad sense-

how sweet we are to believe what we make.

It’s only natural, we have to get by;

it’s harder to choose and end it, because

what if…

What’s stupendous is how all this-

Babylon,

falls,

golden evenings,

songs,

things hearts can do-

all this fanatical whole,

this evermore,

is just for us to chance upon,

rapture in and dismember

as if

it cost nothing, no time, no love, at all.  

Duane Michals The Human Condition

Duane Michals The Human Condition

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