for W.


Those lips were meant for kissing
that tell me to be gone,
pronouncing words of stone.
That warm-wide smile, inviting,
so lively, love-delighting
with promise of sweet song . . .
pronouncing words of stone.

Such tenderness is missing.
Because my mind is wrong,
I shall not hear the song;
not seek and take a blessing
from your heart-lips’ caressing.
Because my mind is wrong
they tell me to be gone.

My liar-lips utter dogma
to keep my heart alone.
Your words are words of stone.
Far back is an enigma
of hearts that love, confessing
(withdrawing, gently pressing)
a claim to be at one.


I take your name from the wind
that breathes it constantly.
I hear your name on the wind
that quickens it to me.
No, you shall not rescind
our light decree

of love, as free as the air
and loud as a name.
Our love is unseen as the air
and quiet as a name
unsaid – unlettered – not there.

I hear it the same.


All one day this summer
I was out in the hot rains.
Naked in the sluicing
I with joy withstood
its kissing; it bubbled, dribbled
down the lightning-rod of my body
and in the end I was dry.

O not the rain’s kisses
adored and cherished one, charged one
but yours yours yours yours yours.


Two fires: at one a firebird sings folly
and flower-colours fling up their flush-of-love flames;
while otherwise, otherwise love utters fully
its bare fact.
Her eye-diamond shivers, affirms.


But the giant voice roars mocking through the shrivelled trees,
‘This was nothing, go home.’

And the doors of the face all slam shut
and a welcome leap of the body is shackled
a new note in the heart is struck off
the giving-gentleness of hands is taken away
and the lovely difficult dawn is dragged under
the song of woman-man told not to be
and the sweet incident of love is silenced.

Share away: