Tuesday, 16 December 2014

In the whale’s stomach:

 t\The three whale poems from the Pinocchio series.

In the whale’s stomach:


In the darkness
I remember the time before

Before the spluttering candle
we save by burning
only at odd moments –

we have seven matches left
after that the darkness will become
Eternal -

If only the Leviathan
yawned when it rose
to the surface.

Does it dream?
Are its dreams as small
As the krill it swallows in the millions?

And we, merely accidents along the way –
do we impinge upon its thoughts
in the slightest?

The boat Geppetto travelled in
holds up well in the ebb and flow
of life within a stomach.

My wooden legs rot, flesh
does have distinct advantages – even Geppetto’s feet,
at their age, fare better.


In the stillness
between waves of saltwater
I close my eyes; imagine
the morning sunlight covering
the dusty mountains
of home - night’s galloping shadow
races before the rays,
flowers turn towards the light,
in the distance
the sound of rugs being beaten
by village women
and the squeals of children
in bare feet, their knees
scabby, their noses running,
play soccer with the bladder
of a dead cat in the street.


Geppetto often holds my hands
and explains how he carved each digit,
shaped the half moon nails,
crafted the elbow and wrist sockets
for movement.

At night
after his lips have blown out the candle
and the sound of the sea
fills the dark cavern
in rhythmic sympathy
he likes to explain
how it feels to have a chest
that within a heart beats.

I know I have missed out
and cannot bring myself to believe
my wooden torso can contain
a soul. I do no pray
for rescue, only for a break
in the monotony.

I wish I could see
The light of the fairy’s wand
And believe again for a moment
That anything is possible.

No comments:

Post a Comment