Monday, 5 March 2012

Matching the occasion

From a coral sea, on the bed beside me,
a wave along my view, aquamarine:
a wave that rides and rides and yet remains
stretched high and thin, thin as it can be:
finger-thin, in a low-warm, crackling wind,
no higher than a foot, translucent, tall
water blue, white flecks of spray like - static
electricity - this wave beside you
and above me: I am in your blue eyes

and in a pool, below the water's bourn,
where no sand lifts at all, no current stirs,
the water's still and thick as glycerine.
I see two pebbles, black and smooth, though out of place
both quite at ease, like you and me in double beds:
that is, two beds in holiday rooms pulled-to,
iron summer, in winter, painted wood,
separate, together, in warm or cold
two coddled eggs in a steamy poacher.

And here's my birthday card, in lurid colour,
my bedside picture of a happy couple
like lions rolling on the occasion,
both handsome, gazing in each other's eyes.
His sunglasses reflect - they must - blue skies,
still lake, see the sun and mountains, and bright
a petal-garnered border, red flowers, lips:
we watch them reflect on their willing world
in which we match completely.

This poem came to me on the morning of my birthday, a month ago, in bed and in that usual hypnogogic state which so many of us unhealthily rely on.  The mechanics of the piece aside, the night before my thoughts in general on poems had been: match the image to the emotion, and so I came-to, with a couple of images and my blue-eyed Helen beside me. Happy day.

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