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Tag: Memory

A Homecoming

Suburban walls, suburban gardens,
Suburban bricks
Confront me
A decade on
So much has changed
Behind my suburban exterior
Am I as unrecognisable
As the scene before me?
As cold, as hard, as bleak?
So much changed
Beneath the same shell
Like these houses and shops
Am I, like them,
Decaying,
Rotting from within?
Have these ten long and weary years
So etched their pain
Into the very stones of my soul
That I may never return
To what I was?
But if I could
Would I?
Have I endured the torturing winds
And tormenting rains
For nothing?
Have I watched them erode my hard exterior
And expose my raw and bloody flesh
To the tempestuous elements
Just to say
“It is right,
Right to suffer so”?
No, no I will not
But stand and shout
At my new found strength
Swept clean by those who seek to hurt
And once more return
Return to this suburbia
Unlike those around
In their safe suburban lives
A newcomer
Returning to my fathers’ land
To these
Suburban walls, suburban gardens,
Suburban bricks

13/07/1990

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So many years have I

So many years have I
The littling voices heard
And listened whilst
They lying spoke
And mouthed deriding words
Malignant in my mind
Of how I ungainly, unseemly and unfit
For custom social and for life unsuited was
Of intellect enfeebled and any skills divorced
And so believing siren song
Until now I travelled blind
But now I meekly sit and I ask
The truth of all I knew
If so unskilled am I
Then how have I become
All that I am and that is much
And more there is to come
So now must I
The littling voices still
And onward go
And higher still
To see what lies beyond
Then shall I with perfect peace
Full consummated pass
To darkness then
To seek what lies beyond

29/11/2009

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At the grave of James Hogg, The Ettrick Shepherd

Silent stone word carved
By church and heath
Says so little
Of the soul that lies
Under turf
And sky
What spark was lit
From that mortal frame
And raised
From lowly shepherd
So divine a voice
In this lonely place?

I feel a debt
Of thankfulness
And humility
To this kindred spirit
Whose majesty I feel
Reaching out
As I stand
Before the
Silent stone word carved

19/09/1998

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Stooped Raincoat II

I sit here in my room and look out across the street
There is a light on in someone’s room
Whose I’ll never know, someone I know I will never meet
I’m just a stooped raincoat in the gloom

Star shine
Shine brightly
Brightly on those out there who know
Know what it means to be tired and alone
Alone without anyone
Anyone to love

I walk in the park watching prams pulling mothers
Talking to no-one, letting their children play
Passing me by, going back to their lovers
Not seeing a stooped raincoat in their way

Star shine
Shine brightly
Brightly on anyone out there who loves
Loves all those who are tired and alone
Alone without anyone
Anyone to love

I recall the one I love, how her going hurt me so
Standing there, an old suitcase in her hand
She told me she had to leave, had to go
She couldn’t love a stooped raincoat so bland

Star shine
Shine brightly
Brightly down on the one whose leaving hurt me so
So much it left me tired and alone
Alone without anyone
Anyone to love

I stand alone in the city square and look round
There’s nothing here except the city lights
Nothing here for me in this cold, hard town
For a lost stooped raincoat in the night

Star shine
Shine brightly
Brightly down on all those lonely people here
Here where we live so tired and alone
Alone without anyone
Anyone to love

I turn round and head back to my lifeless room
The light is off now there across the street
It doesn’t matter anyway, let my pain resume
For me, a stooped raincoat incomplete

Star shine
Shine brightly
Brightly down on the life I leave behind
Behind me so tired and alone
Alone without anyone
Anyone to love

05/03/2003

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A life reborn (Some thoughts at Tushielaw)

Eagles cry, eagles haunt
Above moorland
Of grouse
And heather
And life
Myriad sheep trod paths
Lead me deeper
Into this delightful, deceptive freedom
On the edge
Of my existence
Fresh, cold, sharp winds
Buffet me
And roar
Deep gullies
In my soul
Cutting deep
They wound
And cleanse
And drive cobwebs
Long grown
From my being
And once again
I am me
And I am free

18/09/1998

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She sits there opposite me

She sits there opposite me
In that old chair of hers
Knitting those strange shapes she made
Toys, animals, useful things
So many – I have some still
In some forgotten corner of my life

She sits there opposite me
Wrapped against the cold
Her breathing sometimes shallow
Sometimes laboured, sometimes still
So far, so very far
From my youth remembered time

She sits there opposite me
So frail and grey and worn
Her vibrant life reduced, debased, displaced
By depression, despair and pain
And saddened we
Sit with her and we cry

She sits no longer where
So staunchly once she did
Her one warm chair now empty stands
Soundless like a vault
And poorer now we live
With remembrance of a once great life

29/11/2009

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