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Wendy Mewes writing about Brittany


LOST MAN’S REFRAIN


The past hovers in a distant cloud:

Always the threat of rain, advancing and retreating,

The bar of the horizon, low and lowering,

Like love limbo dancing.


Am I beginning or ending?

Receiving or sending?

Where’s the fiery arrow

That will let me know the start?

And when and when and when

Will I erase

The thin grey line around my heart...


Worlds fragment and coalesce:

Below a million stars

The desert horseman is obscured

In the dust of his volition.

But waves break all around me:

As I search through sand,

Old wounds confound me,

Green shadows stay my hand.


Inside the knot twists tighter,

Winching body and thought

Too close for comfort -

Churning up the old dis-ease:

Taking on pain to keep oneself sane.

Here on the edge,

At the mercy of myself,

Lack makes me vulnerable,

But there are different shades of bravery

Within and outside purgatory.


Am I beginning or ending?

Receiving or sending?

Where’s the fiery arrow

That will let me know the start?

And when and when and when

Will I erase

The thin grey line around my heart...


I learn too easily, this is my fault:

Making connections

Standing corrections

Witholding, remoulding,

Having to try, getting by,

Turning from here to there,

A pinball ricochet

As faith ebbs away,              

Waiting for the blindfold to unwind,

To feel the safest hands I’ll ever find.

 

Like lunar walking, I go up and down,

From hard to soft, light to heavy,

Struggling to stay on course,

Losing signs in the chill snow of need,

Faltering in any attempt at speed,

But concentrate now -

Or who will ever find me?

And mind me ...


In that elusive when,

I’ll know my part,

And then and then and then

Will I erase

The thin grey line around my heart.





MOOR


It was the moor that opened us

To freedoms of the horizontal plane,

So hard, so soft, a world of

Pluvious air, wrapped every nuance

In pale folds of brume.


The moor-grass changed each season:

Young, verdant, later bleached of life,

We saw beyond all reason,

Leaning locked against the rock, with

Sun-gleamed quartz a white sheet

For our backs.


Lulled by a rare ease like the buzzard’s soar,

We lived a rainbow on that moor.


Our footsteps fell on stony tracks

Where what might be was stretched out

Vastly, over tracts of gorse and broom,

Hemmed only by the distance of the view.

You talked and talked, the words like litter

Scattered on a breeze that rippled

Brownly over bracken seas.


Moor-covered hills with mountains

In their DNA, hold on to every memory:

A little piece of you, a part of me,

Still strewn like jewels across the heather

A lasting spawn

Of days we spent inside that weather.


It nailed our colours from the very start,

Your green eyes and my grey heart.




 

RUIN


We played in that old ruin,

Mark, Sylvie, Dev and I,

Threading childhood dreams

Through something broken:

Truncated walls, a single arch,

Lost purpose, masquerading as romance.


I led because I talked the best.

The others took direction,

Indifferent or desiring,

Through laughter cracked by cruelty

Wrapped in nature’s greening stance.


We grew up and unfurled.

Mark dreamt, Dev dared,

I wound up in my words,

Flirting with truth and Sylvie

More fragile than her beauty.

Nothing was settled, we only

Played for time, revolving  

In that other ruined structure

Called the world.


Our hopes were vague,

All focused on survival,

Far too hung up to grieve

The missed stop of arrival.


Fast forward on to now -

Mark lost, Dev dead

On London streets and Afghan sand,

Sylvie, adrift in drunken dactyls,

Twice deserted (only once by me).

I still have my stories, my dissolving dream.


Thread end, dead end, back

To that eternal present

Beneath the mouldering arch,

For failure not my own,

Where grey and green rewind:

I am still living in the left behind.

Nature at least does not discriminate

Between what is and some more pristine state.

The ruin carries on, the teller tells,

Each prospering their shadow-selves.





Vous passez sans me voir



C’était la guerre :

Nous deux

Pris de nos mères


A l’aurore du jour

A l’aube

De notre vie


Destinés à la haute forêt.


Mon ami Yves

Tué

Avant mes yeux


Son corps trouvé

Par chance

Deux ans plus tard


Ici je reste

Dans ma

Foyer serein


Cerclé par une silence feuillée.


J’entends les pas

Des gens

Passant en bas


Avec ses proches

Sans care

Sauf petites choses


Les oiseaux chantent

Mes mots

Les arbres, mon souffle.


Je ne vois rien,

Personne

Ne pense à moi


Ma vie perdue, la liberté.






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