A common man marvels at uncommon things. A wise man marvels at the commonplace. CONFUCIUS

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Six Poems Written While Walking The Coast Path Between Plymouth And Poole


 don't oh don't please don't
make me

Sleep work

Sometimes it's easy
paring the fruit, shelling the kernel,
picking the bones clean dry.

At other times you're sucking
thin wine through a straw
that's blocked and flattened,
or trying to play a flute
with no finger holes.

Who knows the reason
why work can seem easy
or work can seem hard?

Perhaps the work is done
in the coil of the dreaming mind,
long before
any gaudy thoughts unwind.

My Digital Life

Oh how can I live without Twitter
Or Facebook or Bebo or blogs?
If access were barred to my cell phone
My life would go straight to the dogs.

If you wrestled me from my computer
I couldn't account for my rage.
If you hijacked my laptop or hacked at my desktop
I'm an animal stuck in a cage.

If you unplugged my personal iPod
My life would be sadder than sad.
If you smashed my TV, DVD or PC
I'd go more than just acronym-mad.

However, if I think about it,
My rational mind might construe
That without all this digi-crapola
I've a whole lot of living to do.

Father and son

He cried, 'I love you, son', and then he died,
and something died in me also —
but something else strengthened, and survived.


Rain cascades over Cahors.
In the church-cum-art gallery
a video by a Chinese artist
shows a waterfall flowing backwards
in slow motion.

Four Wise Axioms

Find the seeds of spring in winter.
Take a walk around the lake.
Learn to skate in the summertime.
Learn to dream while you're awake.


Ruth said...

Robert, nothing like walking for days to simmer the crapola down into beautiful existential poems like this. I love them. It seems that you've covered a wide spectrum here, starting with that first primordial cry dodo dodo . . . Ending with the wise axioms is like closing the loop, back to that simple place, but now with an embrace of the wisdom gained through life.

George said...

This a wonderful little collection of poems, Robert, and I find great delight in the variety. My favorite lines—perhaps because we have been discussing the relationship between feeling and words on Ruth's blog, "Washed Stones"—are these from "Sleep Work":

Perhaps the work is done
in the coil of the dreaming mind,
long before
any gaudy thoughts unwind.

I also love your "Four Wise Axioms," especially the one about finding seeds of spring in winter. I remember Camus saying that, in the midst of winter, he found within himself an invincible summer.

Looking forward to hearing more about your walk!

am said...

Wonderful to know that you were out walking and composing poetry!

From dodo dodo dodododo to learn to dream while you're awake.

Thanks so much! Looking forward to posts about this walk.

Martin said...

Oh, these are good, I especially like the "Four Wise Axioms" thank you for sharing.

Sy said...

these are great!

The Solitary Walker said...

Thanks so much, everyone, for your positive comments about my ragbag of poems. My favourite lines are also those you quote from 'Sleep work', George.

Although the last poem seems to have struck a chord, I like it less myself, and find it the least original!

dritanje said...

Only just read these poems, I like them all a lot, and I also noted the 4 lines that George did - exceptional!

The Solitary Walker said...

Thanks so much, dritanje. You really are too kind.

Susan Scheid said...

Robert: I have wondered where you've been. (I suspected it must be one of your wonderful walks, and am so glad to see it was!) Now, three posts up to savor. This one first: George has got there before me, so I'll simply echo his choice of the words from "Sleep Work." Lovely!