...and then

Saturday, 6 February 2016

How to: Not feel. Part 1

If I were one for easy ways,
I'd tell you 
Mundane things, real things
That are of this world. 
I'd urge you to watch dervishes of your blood
Whirl in slomo
Till there was nothing to whirl in
Till your eyes close and couldn't 

But I fancy myself a poet. 
So I'll tell you stories
Of trembling taupe tails 
Writhing without context, 
Of rabbit-foot returns. 
I'd recommend grand things, 
Dramatic things that happen
Contained in the burst of a moment.

I'd tell you
Let go of a hand you want to hold,
Watch its perfection die
I'd say 
Plunder a little, tear something: 
A painting, a mouth, a silent wish. 
I could teach you
To write in a book with no lines

Word after word after word;
Black ink sculpting paper to life.
If I were kind, I'd warn you
There's nowhere to run after that:
Can you not hear mocking laughter
Of pages you've birthed?
Can you not hear the pangs
Of those you haven't?

Once you're done writing,
Pick up a carnation,
A jasmine, if you wish
Or a sunflower 
If you are particular about colour
(You're done for already, if you are.)
Destroy it gently 
In a poem, a story, a painting, a book.

There you've done two things:
1. Worn time like a pearl necklace
Unmoving, near-perfect, disorienting
2. Crucified a flower
In eternity, on a page, between words
Or brushstrokes
I dare you to feel after this. 
I dare you to not.