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Monday, 20 December 2010

When Earth became a lesser sun


It was a sign
the first of many
that the world was ending slowly when

we heard the pylon sizzle
like a bacon rasher

just an early surge
of fire from earth's deep belly.

I'd often said to Mary
how the lines would be the death of us.

'Oh my, you do go on!' she'd say,
'yet when the canopy
is fully greened
we cannot even see the blessed things!'

I'd tell her how the lines
are modern man's
late answer to the ancients,
how to think of them
as modern ley lines - of a sort.

"They're lines of force," I'd say,
"or stave lines in the sky -
for music, too's a force
we do not understand."

Then I'd go on: "If this 'ere path
were iron filings 'stead of stones
and leaf mould, Mary,
they'd be rearranging,
jumping in the most amazing patterns
you could see.

So never mind
you cannot see them
I can feel them in my bones!

Instead of iron filings,
what we've got is us:
two people standin' 'ere, who knows
or thinks them knows
what happens in thems brains!"     'O, you
and your iron filings!' she would say,
'you do go on, you do!'

The Kingfisher had made it clear to me:
omen or first symptom, call it as you will.

We'd often seen it skim the lake,
a flash of Royal blue.
That day it was electric blue,
a lightning bolt that hugged the wires -
escape denied - before
it plunged, not into water, but
a web of steel that disassembled it.

I'm talking long before
the earth became another sun,
before it spread soft orange light
across the Solar void -
Aye, soft it was in those days,
just a night light in the nursery...

I got quite angry with her sometimes...
still, bless her that she visits me
between her visits to oncology -
and always, always
when they turn the key
to let her in, she'll ask
how I am doing,
and when will I come home.

22 comments:

Jeanne said...

Oh, Dave, this may be your best one yet. Have you thought about putting together a collection?

Derrick said...

I don't know how you think of them, Dave! Great photo inversion - the pylon does glow!

Mary said...

Oh, this is beautiful and heartbreaking. Really well done - really.

Mark Kerstetter said...

The fullness and the fragility of the human - Gorgeous poem.

fiveloaf said...

wow! this is good david! enjoyed it! here's mine- http://fiveloaf.wordpress.com/2010/01/23/painted-hallways/

kathew said...

wow- I always have thought it would be dangerous to live near those lines...yikes
Well done!

Jingle said...

powerful piece.
Glad to see you in.

A++

Gwei Mui said...

This is a gripping and heart wrenching piece, beautiful but so sad.

Windsmoke. said...

That's got to be one of your finest. I agree with Jeanne you should start a collection maybe even a book.

ThePeSla said...

Simply Wonderful!

ThePeSla

Theodore Daniel Richards said...

When I was a kid, they put up those high tension lines to feed the electric furnace at Lukens Steel. They said thanks to them, our electric bill would be less. No one believed them. You could hear the wires all night ZZZZZZZZZZ. We got used to it. Only sometimes, when there was a surge, blue lightning would jump across our floor. We complained and they told us, not to worry, our house was grounded but just in case, "Don't take a shower in a storm." We believed them.

Titus said...

That is an absolute blinder, Dave. Just when I think I'm getting to know your voice, you take my breath away. The use of the iron filings is particularly brillant. But then there's the kingfisher, and ...

A Fistful Of Moonbeams™ said...

Breathtakingly grand in scope and significance.

Dave King said...

Jeanne
Hi, yes I have begun to think about it... not sure about the next step. Thanks for the encouragement.

Derrick
I took the photograph, thinking there might be a poem there, but at that point had no idea what the poem would be.
The inversion came last, of course.

Mary
A very warm welcome to my blog and massive thanks for the comment.

Mark
Hi and welcome. Much gratitude for your kind comment.

fiveloaf
Welcome. I shall be looking up yours as soon as. Many thanks.

kathew
Hi and a warm welcome to you. I am sure that living close by is not good.

jingle
Many thanks for that - and your support.

Gwei Mui
Mmm... I started it without knowing how it would end. Thanks.

Windsmoke
That's a terrific commendation. Thanks.

ThePeSla
Hi and most welcome to the blog. Thanks for visiting and taking time out to comment.

Theodore
I'm sure I would have believed them too! I believe that living close by often causes headaches. Thanks for the comment.

Titus
I did actually see the kingfisher "skim the lake" - which is close by the pylon - though that was on another occasion. Thanks for the feedback.

A fistfull of moonbeams
Hi, good to have you aboard. Thanks for commenting. Your comment is wonderfully encouraging.

Kat Mortensen said...

I can't help but wonder where your mind was when you wrote this - it's such an amazing mix of down-to-earth dialogue and phantasmic imagery. I had a feeling the cancer element would come, but your choice of "oncology" makes is so much more elegant - in keeping with the feel of it.
I wrote a poem about hydro towers once, but it came nowhere near to the power of this.

Kat

Dave King said...

Kat
I must confess to being a tad overawed by some of the comments, not least by yours. In this instance I do not know the precise source of it all. A I said above, I took the photo with the thought in mind that there might be a poem in it. Part of that was the fact of the pylon being in a copse. When I began I had no thought of the end. That actually came very near the end.
I do thank you most emphatically for your response, though. It is so helpful to know that think you on the right lines.

Kass said...

Love your reference to ley lines. Wouldn't it be wonderful if all our modern-day ?IMPROVEMENTS? held good energy for the planet.

This is a powerfully good poem.

Dave King said...

Kass
Amen to that!

Jinksy said...

An electric poem in more ways than one!
For some strange reason I can dowse lay lines, the same way as people can water, and I discovered they are not only fixed on or below the topsoil, but rise above, way into the air, in a vertcal plane... Your peom reminded me...

Dave King said...

Thanks for that Jinksy.

Fascinating stuff - really fascinating. And thanks for the comment.

Have a great Christmas!

Noxalio said...

Dave, oh what a beautiful, powerful piece, this ... i enjoyed it enormously.

bravo.

Dave King said...

Noxalio
Many thanks for the feedback. A warm welcome to you, it's great to have you aboard. And a very Happy Christmas to you and yours.