Inumbrate

One of us should have a good life at least
and it will not be me, with nothing left to strive
but this despised existence in grey shadow
and the ragged dullness of apathy
incipient gloom and the caress of thorns
painted in shades of ashen sorrow
as I sink
sink
sink
no more to rise to surface breath
renunciation of being and joy in every heartbeat thud

Such a simple cure could be found if you
should but find your heart to provide the antidote
to this ravening distress of spirit and drear eye
instead, I am the sacrifice on which you build your life
a trifling thing of no great import or loss
as easily forgot as a word from a stranger
as I fall
fall
fall
no more to fly on light wings
repudiation of all sense of life and delight

Becoming the empty space inside, where
used to reside the soul you took in an offering to yourself
dry as ancient tinder in forgotten ruins
awaiting only the spark you could bring
forever takes a long time to come and go
in austere reminders of love-lit bliss
as I fail
fail
fail
to find determinant optimism
your abandoned dreams still haunt my vision

Permafrost

Snow falls in frozen tears to the icy ground
where once hallowed footsteps fell
the sun has fallen from the frigid sky

Spring will not come, though it may warm
not growth nor scent of bloom
shall make way past this chill
the birdsong melody mere harshness

The stars have all quenched their light
in the depths of the deepest seas
amidst the cold bones of the lost and heartbroken
where lay the not-yet-deceased in bitter ordeal

Summer’s heat will not assail this gelid soul
nor bright shine colour the pallor
where ghosts of kisses still haunt
and the echo of laughter wounds abysmal

Let winter remain, and in its glacial embrace
no glow shall provide comfort
she has become the winter itself in cold
ice, but only I am subject to her whim

Dead end blues

Five and dime got a glass of wine
got a bottle of tequila and I feel real fine
round here all the work has run away
and there ain’t much left to make the young folk stay

Drinking from the bottle and taking the pills
ain’t nobody laughing life ain’t got no frills
picking up food from the dollar store
trying to pay the rent and it looks like war

Landlord coming and no money to pay
end up on the street as a lonely stray
heat turned and off no way to pill the bill
trying to hide the cold in these stolen pills

that’s us
we’re living on the edge and we’re sinking like while we cuss
that’s us
we’re driving to the end of the world
that’s us

My wife is staring hard at me
kids are going hungry no way to relief
was love now it’s only survival
neighbours looking less like friends and more like rivals

banker man is mailing me
telling me to pay what I can’t see or believe
when the work closed down had nowhere to go
and the government don’t care they just put on a show

sad songs, trying to make ends meet
dreams of better days are bittersweet
Cheap liquor and gas station booze
trying to keep away the dead-end blues

that’s us
we’re living on the edge and we’re sinking like while we cuss
that’s us
we’re driving to the end of the world
that’s us

We’re driving to the end of the end
that’s us
we living on the edge and sinking while we cuss
that’s us
that’s us

Music to follow. I’m trying to avoid writing hiphop because I feel it might well be cultural appropriation. This isn’t traditional blues by any means. It resides in that darkl place of the southwest of the US

All the things (song)

I wish I didn’t have to
keep on loving you
through all of the pain in my mind

I wish I could let go of
all the things we dreamed of
through all the days that went by

I wish I didn’t need you
but like a fool I still do
you haunt my days and my nights

(spoken)
I wish I didn’t feel these things, all the suffering and sorrow that the thought of you brings
but my love for you shines through in my darkest hours, remember when we always had fresh flowers
the solace that we found in each other’s arms, kept us warm and safe from harm
all taken away without a word truly spoken, is it only me with my heart broken?

I wish I didn’t want you
but I do and still love you
my cross to bear in the darkness all alone

I wish the words you told me
when you were held close to me
were the truth as I believed you said

I wish the things you promised me
were really true and to this day
I believe in the fate you told me was driving us

(spoken)
I wish I didn’t feel these things, all the suffering and sorrow that the thought of you brings
but my love for you shines through in my darkest hours, remember when we always had fresh flowers
the solace that we found in each other’s arms, kept us warm and safe from harm
all taken away without a word truly spoken, is it only me with my heart broken?

I wish I didn’t have to
keep on loving you
through all of the pain in my mind

I wish I could let go of
all the things we dreamed of
through all the days that went by

I wish I didn’t need you
but like a fool I still do
you haunt my days and my nights

(spoken)
I wish I didn’t feel these things, all the suffering and sorrow that the thought of you brings
but my love for you shines through in my darkest hours, remember when we always had fresh flowers
the solace that we found in each other’s arms, kept us warm and safe from harm
all taken away without a word truly spoken, is it only me with my heart broken?

I wish I didn’t want you
but I do and still love you
my cross to bear in the darkness all alone

I wish the words you told me
when you were held close to me
were the truth as I believed you said

I wish the things you promised me
were really true and to this day
I believe in the fate your vowed

(spoken)
I wish I didn’t feel these things, all the suffering and sorrow that the thought of you brings
but my love for you shines through in my darkest hours, remember when we always had fresh flowers
the solace that we found in each other’s arms, kept us warm and safe from harm
all taken away without a word truly spoken, is it only me with my heart broken?

I know sometimes I’m hazy
I know that I sound crazy
a mere memory of you is enough to break my day

and the memories still haunt me
your words they still implore me
devote my life to dreams that you will never make real

When we lay and we made love
I felt like I was drawn above
all the things of this world we knew

All the things of this world we knew
All the things of this world we knew

(spoken)
I still love you

This is an R&B song primarily. I wrote it in a furiously inspired 20 minutes. It verges into emo-rap as much of my songwriting has of late. I wrote the music on a keyboard and the lyrics just seemed to flow. I’ve recorded a basic version. I may record more but as with all of my music I’ll keep it to myself.

Moribund

In graceless acquiescence I accept this lot of life
this careless betrayal of thought and aspiration
the ship disappears on far horizon to tempest sea
the last echoes of keened karakia fade to far-flung isles
embers die in funeral fires midst ashen lips and bitter tongue
yielding ungainly submission to universal whim
unsighted prescience given unspoken benediction
the mist has failed to rise from the water
the clouds obscure the sun in wet cotton-heavy uncertainty
drapes of enigmatic form under silent domed firmament
In unkempt admission I consent to this condemnation
this casual perfidy of obdurate actuality
authenticity in the physics of a vanishing light

Addled

I wake in sweat long before the dawn
I have not showered in days now
living on cigarettes and booze and coffee and weed
and the toll it takes in some strange
rite of passage
aging decades in months and showing
time passing in rushes and spurts
where once youth shone and held to
features of open smile, now lines form
eyes sunk to hollows in snow-shot ground
I probably smell terrible, but fuck it
nobody will notice or care
there’s an irony to it as I once
was so careful of my look and my ablutions
disaster is another way of knowing
that I cannot take charge of this bodily machine
so I drink and I smoke and ignore
those other needs
the seeming irrelevancies of time and tide
they no longer have use nor meaning
I try — I want!
to write poetry of love and of beauty surrounding
but those images are not mine to give or to say
and with each effort comes the hidden hollows
of my cheeks now covered in my beard
I wish sleep, but it comes so infrequent
troubled with dream and wakefulness
in the lonely hours of the winter night

Extinction

The end of the world seeps in through the cracks
enveloping silent reality in the cold dark
no apocalyptic fires or shivering earth
not inundation or raging storm
the end of the world consists of little things
that break and roil ‘gainst the shores of existence
of loneliness and sorrow wrought of fallen dream
of lost nights in shallow grave mind
heart-rent lyric from a forgotten chorus
the end of the world rolls in like mist on an autumn morning
rising in crepuscular air, strange forms in writhing phantasm
permeating flesh and bone and soul
an intimate conclusion for each outcast heartbeat
words fall to desuetude in malicious coda
the end of the world is glass shattered mirrors
on unswept floors of barren beings
susurration cessation of the stillness coming
one million reflected lights from a single eye
suffocated in chilling breath and ragged word
the end of the world drips stalactites relentless
in twilight caverns to cuspated points
slow evisceration of old-held belief, hewing
entropy in frozen-frame images from a lost silver screen
eroded acetate of abandonment dreams

Te mutunga. Acrylic on canvas

My faculty for language is returning and my post-stroke cognitive abilities seem to be in full recovery. I realise this is a rather bleak piece, but there you have it

Sum

I am footprints in the snow
waiting the thaw and fading in the melt
I am footprints in the sand
waiting time and tide to disappear
I am crystal breath in the icy air
dissipated and forgotten
I am the discarded toy, once beloved
cast aside in thoughtless disregard
I am the single raindrop
vanishing in the sun’s gaze
I am the fleeting dream
erased in the morning light
I am the faded photograph
past recollection at the bottom of the drawer
I am the rusted sculpture
bygone tribute in a fallow field
I am the solitary crow
lonely caw of anguished defiance
I am the echo of days gone by
scattered to the winds of time and memory
I am the unwritten word
not heard nor read nor thought
I am the final chord in the last song
evanescent reverberation in the dying hour

Flat

The tree and decorations
that we bought last year in celebration
of love blooming like spring in the icy air
will remain packed away this winter
Neither cards nor gifts will be exchanged
not a word will be said within these silent walls
not feast nor drink nor cheer to enjoy
in the lonely season of unfestive cold
I still got you a card, of wistful wishes
which will join in seclusion
the one for your birthday that I have kept safe
never to be given or read
neither shy smiles nor affectionate embrace
over frozen threshold to warmth within
shall bring joy to this prison cell
dispirited spirit of unrealized dream
the company of your ghost and memory

Deluge

Five thousand, eight hundred and thirty hours
give or take
since that bitter moment
I have spent three of those hours
with other humans
0.05%
it would take me, at this very rate
nearly five and half years to spend
a full day with others
but I doubt I have that left in me
I am crushed in this solitude
perspective as askew as a half-dropped coat
in an autumnal rain
or the pile of ungifted gifts
still in your name
weariness envelops my frame
and night brings sleepless seclusion
there are no priests or gods to grant
the absolution I crave
no lightbringer lingering on
far horizons
there is not the peace and quiet
of welcome relief
but the cold stare of eternity
I cannot save myself from this
I have no arms left to wave to
imaginary lifeguards or for gripping the rope
I have no voice with which to cry
some prayer of plea for mercy
I am disembodied
mute and falling
every man is an island now
and mine is on no charts
to be found or discovered by
adventuring souls
there are no stars to guide
sextant and compass abandoned
I will drown in this placid sea