parcels from Italy 

when I was a boy
I would receive

parcels from Italy
quite regularly 

books
I could not read

clothes
too small for me

maternal greetings
fripperies

now I miss them 
infinitely 

synapse

he thought about the little bay
where they had taken the children on holiday
and where he hadn’t been as happy
as he should have been

and he remembered holidays
with his own father
that brought him up with a jolt
like an electric current

connections occur across a tiny space
a synapse

or the passage of many years

now like a couple in separate rooms
he was out of kilter with himself

sleep couldn’t come too soon

wind through grass

she sat there like an old lioness
presiding over her wounds

and when she told of the children she’d abandoned
some fifty years before
who’d turned out alright
I saw tears well up behind her eyes

take away that prop I thought
and the whole citadel comes down

the whole citadel
that I am reminded
houses the soul

then I remembered my own mother
her own props and evasions
and a sudden gust rippled my conscience
like wind through grass

that night I dreamt of a white horse
standing in a burnt-out barn
stranded and irrecoverable

child’s pose

at the end of my yoga session
before meditation
I go into the position known as Balasana
or child’s pose

this morning I held it
for some considerable period of time

it’s a position that seems most natural to me

in a strange way
I suppose it always has

silent partner

this morning I remembered myself
as a small boy
stretching to greet the day
with hands that could capture sunlight
or think that they could anyway

it took me by surprise
and I admit I almost cried
to think that when I breathe my last
he will be there by my side

my silent partner

If There Had Been Any Blue

i.

On the other side
of the mountain,
birds fell from the sky
like stones,
people walked alone
in strange zig-zag patterns
pale and distraught,
and of course
everything was black and white
like an old movie,
except this would
have no happy ending.

Then like a bolt from the blue
– if there had been any blue –
it dawned on me,
this was for real.

This was my home town.

ii.

I found a little shop
that sold cups without saucers
run by a man
that I thought was my father,
he said that he’d known me
before the disaster,
but now we were all on our own.

He gave me a cup by way of
a keepsake,
he said I was suffering from
some kind of heartache,
the cup had a crack
and couldn’t hold anything
now we were all on our own.

iii.

When the colours came back
they came back without blue,
back to a world that was
riven right through
just for an instant,
then all turned to black
but the cup with a crack
which was blue.

Blue is the colour
that I still remember,
as catching my eye
above all the others
when I was a child
beholding the heavens
blue beyond blue
– if there had been any blue –
blue beyond blue
beyond blue.

image: Dreamstime.com
image: Dreamstime.com
[first posted 12/1/2014]