Grange Road

Grange road runs crazy
from between the church and the shopping centre
up to the foothills of what we call
the Dublin Mountains

and we know it for this small slice of time,
a year we've spent in a strange house
full of musty books and stale chocolate,
rusting knives and forks,
shivering patience of lace curtains
on windows overlooking the road,
catching the odd glint of red at sunset
over slate rooves and cold chimneys

we know it for what it has been for a year
alive at night with drunken teenagers
kicking over bins, smashing car windows,
hanging around Londis asking you
to buy them alcohol
they'll bring it to the park
they'll drink it hastily in the darkness
they'll break things in an ecstatic rage
and blindly let the road swim them home

it's a river of life and death
and apparently random decisions
we saw a boy in a red car lose control
around the tricky corner
and destroy 2 cars in a headlong collision
they both lived - this time -
residents gathered to watch, talking
about the other accidents at that corner,
the ones who made it and the ones who died
right there on the road
in bloodstains bleached by the streetlights

over the park wall among the dead leaves
you can hear the cars moaning past
you can imagine dying souls travelling home
there's a stream that follows its path
for a while, under and over ground, through gardens
it runs to join the Dodder
where this road is forgotten
its memories emptied into cold black water

prayers and curses for two miles and fifty years
and we've known very little of it but what sings
in the blood in the small hours
what beats in the heart in the wind
an infinite procession of hooves and then tyres,
young feet growing older, then young feet again
what is a road anyway
it lays itself down in your mind
and in your dreams you follow it
and every other road you've ever known
to the gates of your sacred city
 

Child King

The person at your heart is a child king
head held high, flying, singing
nonsense words to the tune of your memories

you are a person, you have a story
he sings over the rain and wind
(he's running, it's stormy, he loves it)

you are a person, you exist
in a desire-fulfilling world
a world where storms have a meaning

and that meaning, somehow,
through some kind of universal design,
has something to do with you.

The child king sings because he is not you
he is not anyone, in fact
he doesn't even know that he exists

he will never have babies or a job
his language is a song of fragments
his bare feet indifferent to grass or broken glass

every time you try to focus on his face
it has changed, he has gone, replaced
by a blue wind, a sheen of sun on oil,

strange things of that kind, themselves
gone in an instant.
His song disappears too -

there is nothing but a whispered word
that brings you into a forgotten room
memory upon memory, wasted afternoons

shuddering in a silence without him.
He is your heart and he is running away.
You hate him and you wish he would stay.

Sailships!

I was on board a huge ship leaving a harbour in a huge flotilla of ships of all different shapes and sizes. The one I was on was a gigantic hydrofoil, and the captain was making it swing and swerve across the water so that we could all hardly keep our footing; another similar hydrofoil behind us was doing the same thing. There were yachts and clippers and liners and little powerboats and galleons and ships from all times and places, all heading out on the world's biggest ever pleasure cruise, on a totally open ocean, under a totally blue sky with just a few little speckles of cloud. I thought "Yes! I have to write a book called Sailships!"

John's Perfect Heart

John's life was a quiet disaster
of needles and computer screens and alcohol
bank notes drifting gently down
onto the bodies of his parents

pets asleep in the filth of a swollen toilet
doors and windows blown open
in his mind, lights winking down a river
walking to work in the rain and the rot

he saved lives and stole them, ran screaming
down stunned streets, smiled carefully
in shops as he bought suicide implements,
melted and shook and snarled in the gym,

drove endlessly along roads, roads, roads
as future memories swam in his veins
- he would marry and father sad children
- he would die at someone else's funeral

John's life was his own, and every choice
split the universe in two, each half perfect -
perfect in panic and pain, in rain, in madness -
such a heart raging in such a savage heaven

Ghost Ship

her mind is disintegrating
blood leaking between memories
every day melting into one breakfast
every evening into one cup of sugary tea
there was a father, a husband, a church
images rewinding on a damaged videotape
giving way to unknown faces and voices
that slide easily off the mind's surface
recycling like paper and glass and identity
and the house setting sail across the sea
into the deep straw horizon glow
with her crew of photographs and ghosts
bound by memory into deathless illusion

Johnny No-Name

I am mute torn orange leaf sucked into white sky
word made flesh rooted in shrine body shaking
cemetery kiss in ivy silent cloud-waiting laughing
and true sacred psychosis bubbling bright in blood
blue mountains weeping and fat river choking hills
world-serpent son of battlefield-broken god
wolf-son destiny for bringing blessed mother darkness
all churches mumbling nursery rhyme revelation
reawakening birdsong in glass house sweet air
burnt clothes burning mind beautiful burning hair

Suryodaya

suryodaya, the wave that wakes us
steaming land and hills sweating cloud
brief and still and the crying of gulls and
herons, the backs of fish glowing
in the bay and the rivers trailing fingers
up the crevices of the hills

every night the houses and I and the stars
in a dance full of gravity
rabbits creeping up to the dark grass
light from the kitchen in the tips of their fur
and I'm swaying, almost crazy from not talking
all of my life filtering through my mind
and my hands and my skin are not mine, they're moving
in a ritual of morning

I give the world it's geometry today
from schizoid equations and predictions
curves on the axes of my field of vision
patterns I see in the carpet and the grass and the sky
patterns I feel run through my flesh
as a silent, heavy core moves along the breeze
sliding down the arms of an attractor, wings
designed in dreams, given to the memory of the garden

and I'm so alone at the heart of my universe
and I love everything that I see,
standing still under the trees, a glittering mother
giving birth to the sun and my lovers

Choirboy

I was a choirboy where the light
crept through windows stained sacred
in a cold chapel, and I sang from my throat
raw from crying over homework, forgotten toys,
a memory of death floating back through time,
I sang from my blood and no other world
had ever been so holy.

It was so cold out there on the school steps -
I pulled up my hood and sank deep into myself
travelling through my tissues, I dreamed
forwards and backwards in time,
and it could have been half an hour or three hours
or three years
as a rock in the shape of a boy
before a priest came to rescue me,
his cold blue eyes confused when he recognized me -
he'd always thought I was cocky, aristocratic,
not a helpless thing too stupid to call his father,
wandering in imaginary worlds that might never be,
how I sang in my veins to be free.

Every leaf and breath and star and voice was perfect,
lost in time like me, and I sang for the sun
into dusk, the sun tearing wounds in the sky, savage
and desperate to send me to bed. My mother's voice.
Bed the universe, body the living god, pulsing in darkness.

I am not human, have never been human,
something singing and laughing in the skin
and the blood and the bone and the dream.

Jaya Nityananda

forget your holy empty snow. the hero has poisoned blood now. the vampire voice calling to the other dark saviours. when sacrificed on the altar stuffed with barley and wheat and fresh meat he will bring the world crashing down instead of renewing it. corrupt it like a virus in the dream of the machine. the architect of the archetypes has lost track of the boundaries between his many worlds and his realities are bleeding into schizophrenia. fingertips trailing in the smoking black waters. what did he see? Nero, his mirror face blank and plump and laughing. the hero's death will not bring back the green and glowing goddess. she is our enemy now. she lay with dark forces and they run in her son's veins. his soul is damp with sadness and his eyes self-obsessed, loneliness run riot into megalomania. we don't dance any more. we're made of water. we're made of earth. electricity. empty space. the immortal conscious tiger raises one paw and supernovas shatter the night sky. not this. not this. not the blood drinker. magma broken pulse pattern fear body outside mission putrid attar after morning clear master antichrist thirst passion overlord glory antiquity beauty clarion canticle mantifold carulet pelorio anamerita forsaken and dead to the world. you must be. bonfires on the beach as the newborn violinist breaks what he only wanted to love. the sea sucks at his heels. cliffs a thousand feet high appear out of the air as tongues of flaming gas twist emberorange through invisible magnetic fields. he paints the sea within the sea within the sea. he descends to kiss her white wrists. she is the memory of the world. all our damned blood to irrigate her parched skin. the son is lost, his filaments exploding and writhing in space. the wasteland of eternal life. the lesson of moths and poets. he wants to see himself in the eyes of another. his music screams for contact. he can't decide if he's empty or full. he eats until he pukes and eats again, he sprints howling across the parklands at night to outrace the idea of himself.



turnaroud. caricatured morphology of veins and ripples of icecream flesh, raspberry ripple peanut brittle bones gothic architecture of skull and clavicle, outer carriageway of shattered metallic froth. he is the black god of oak who presents the fruit of his heart to the hands of the mother in the long grass. her leather belly fluorescent with starvation. her abdomen flexes like the thigh of a lion. she strides ecstatic through fields of bodies on fire, souls like sweat on her skin. bring out your dead. bring out your shadows. bring out the silverfish under your bathmat and the lies under your stories. offer her your blood and see if she will refuse it. she isn't afraid of karma and she has seen the collapse of every star and the fracture of every solitary moon. she is the dream queen singing the murder of every flower, the nemesis of every narcissist. bring out the wave that you want to roll over every wrong thing in the world. the equation will not balance without its zero. the void must be injected into the living meat. she's growing old and she needs the bread of life. children make music at the altar, blind witless gold-haired delicious innocent wafers of caresses of wind in their virginal harem, their religion of surrender, their chiming trembling melting breathing supersexual intoxicated prasad at her shadow's feet. she burns them like incense, drinks them like fruit juice, tickles and teases them as her dearly beloveds.

she comes because she has chosen the hero and for no other reason, but their union brings the last disaster. because she loves him, she wants him, she needs him, and he, beautiful poisoned petal, only ever wanted to die. he has no heart but an exhausted husk and no blood but a vicious smoke. nothing could ever have killed her except his emptiness, drawing and drowning her infinite atoms over the lip of the singularity. how universes end. how universes begin again.

she perishes forever and hidden in the shells of her chest the poisoned sun cries and shakes and does not die. alone he has recognized himself, the obsidian antimony emptiness. the blossoming opposite of everything. he thought he should never have lived because he was so lastly and vastly lonely, only and terribly to realize: god and goddess is only the loneliness. the loneliness, the aloneness. the seething irreducible vacuum that gives birth. the mother of the ten thousand things. the holographic universe. the eye of the eye of the eye. bent over itself like an ancient over a fire. his own fire. multiplied as many times as his aching blood will take: thinned out absolutely into everlasting bliss.

Biological Angels

Christ's face on a bronze crucifix worn smooth by fingertips. Beside a book about angels by a Spanish priest who says they are all unique, utterly magnificent, flawless kaleidoscope snowglobe dynamos of Divine love influxing into the universe as conscious spiritual energy. Angels for planets, countries, and even poor individual people like the smiling Spanish woman with deep dark eyes who used to see them rippling like firelight along the walls of her bedroom. They spoke to her and told her that she would have a daughter and a son and that they would both die; but she herself, Manuela Estes, was chosen by god as a messenger. He treats his dear ones badly so that they know two things: life is suffering, and he, God, MEANS BUSINESS. The seven thousand year old texts have been corrupted into fables or buried under the ash of liberated buildings so it's time to inject some religious methadone into the veins of a society that's crumbling and trembling to its end. If I was God I'd ignore everyone with any idea of what it means to be holy, or any idea of what society is, or even what a human being is; I'd enlighten a naked ape by a river somewhere, fill him full of such a glorious god-song that lacking language his skin would shine radioactive with it. Do it properly, you know? You can't talk about it anyway without being misunderstood for two thousand years, so why bother trying? Pour so much divinity, so much of the angel-energy into some poor mud-born creature that the mere sight of it would trigger reactions in other mud creatures; seizures and revelations and diarrhoea and suchlike. Let the cult of the Ape Christ begin, and may every notion of pride and sacredness be trampled into the mire of discarded bodies.

Today's list of desires: vegetable soup with a nice bit of chicken. White bread and butter and some lemon curd. A sardine with half a cup of sweet tea. Something woollen to warm the knees, and a nightcap for the head at night, because it sticks out of the covers, happily excreting half of the body's heat due to the inconvenient placement of the nostrils. Stamps for Christmas letters, and presents for the family; books for preference. Everyone likes books.

The sitting room drifts sideways through the afternoon shifting between universes - no choices are being made there after fifty years of gathering and fifteen of quiet dusty memorial: LPs, cracker animals, bills neatly folded in decade-long piles, artificial and dried flowers, books no one needs to read any more, out-of-date stamps and chequebooks; boxes of whitened, stale chocolates, congealed jellies and rancid nutty treats. Once every year the crib comes out and pictures are taken and saved in an album full of identical pictures, and at the end of our lives we will play with the album like a flip-book, watching ourselves decay. This may seem pointless but what else is there to do? Unless God is hidden in the chemistry of the cells and we're all biological angels with wings of muscle and bone and lymph and blood singing with mystery. Evidence for this hypothesis is slim but we refuse to give up hope. We have dedicated ourselves to the assertion of impossible truths and we will never give up.