Shah Jahan

Shah Jahan built the Taj Mahal as a tomb for his favourite wife, Mumtaz. He longed to preserve the love that he had for her.  With its creation, love, magnificence and memory has been preserved. I had the privilege of falling on the stairs inside that lead to the tombs proper on a visit – a treat from my dad while we were visiting family in India.  The anniversary of his death and the reason for my blog is coming up, and I am taking a moment.

Shah Jahan

She wilted, and he slept for one year,
fading like the blush of twilight –
riches do not protect the human flesh
or soul –

death permeates even our innermost
love.

In his darkest dreams, grief struck at his aching bones
and tortured sinews;
the surrounds of a heart heavy from drought,
until, he was woken with a vision to transform
her death into beauty – as she was in life
so she shall be in slumber.

‘No more tear drops on cheeks
that pain compared to her touch,
but across the naked sky,
to prolong this innermost sorrow,

just the last one –

a gesture to sear my longing
in this lonely, mournful place –
the last cry will be affixed
vapour
laden with jewels and precious
splendour
to pierce the clouds
saddened and heaving constantly
as sorrow.

On the south bank, ribbons
of the Yamuna river will stare
at a true reflection of beauty
created from your passing –
it will remain a last kiss on the cheek
from my final tear as it rolls
through Agra.

Your splendour will ignite
a restful place, and make magical
this white opal – as opaque,
as my grief
and as magnificent
as you my love, Mumtaz –

soon we will sleep until we can
no longer, and we leave together
through the ghosted marble
of the Iwan.’

I Love, You Love – Me, Love.

Source: unknown

I love the calmness of your brain; thoughts –
the way they flow.

I secretly listen for hours
when you actually ‘talk’.

I love your strong arms too
the way they… Oh!

I just love the politics of your body.

I love how you love me,
and how you make me grow.

I know, I love you
as a whole, and not just for show.

I absolutely love your nose, too,
and when it is in profile.

And, I love that you suppose, like so,
that you know my style.

I absolutely love the politics of your body.

Silently, I Go

Words tremble and form on my lips.
In the middle of nowhere,
on an old, abandoned field’s
icy, quiet calm – I can
see those words as frosted air,
palpable, almost real.
Almost.
The memory of ecstasy
ripples vehemently in rifts,
saying, ‘don’t let go –
don’t let go of the moment,
the tenderness and the journey
that has begun –
don’t let go of the time invested
and the heart’s own life span,’ –
I clap my mitts together hard.
I need to hear another voice
in the heavy, thick dullness
of meaningless, inside this bitterly
cold wilderness – an expansion
of existence.
Inside this perfect ring of O,
caution and doubt is excluded
by the wintry tourniquet
and deep seated bleakness.
Within this rink of fire,
I have found a plan;
idly scraped into the dense snow’s
virgin white territory
are thoughts and decision making –
a bittersweet means to an end.
I exhale and words reverberate –
detached.
Let loose, they do their own thing.
I believe that trust is its own reward,
and love is a consequence
of that very airing –
so, I let them breathe.
My lips tremble from more words,
although I can’t hear them, they spill
and the cold lets them sit there.
Sat on the snow, memories
cosy up to them,
of when tears made me choke
and lies made me half blind –
now they both
thaw like a discarded
ice lolly bleeding into the impacted
prisms hidden in this pristine
foundation.
I rub my insulated woollen hand
over the small pond’s glass
to see a lifetime spent asking
why amid my mind’s sighs to half
answered questions and doubts,
and painful bouts of inertia.
I find a heavy rock, and listening
only to the whispers between
my thighs’ nylon energy,
I smash it into a face
in the ice –
all of those things are finally
released and surface through the shards
of their confinement –
roaming prisoners cut loose
to set me free,
to crawl out onto the debris.
Wading knee deep I try to remember
what was instilled in me;
I was taught to swim and love,
and trust in rewards,
I was loved and I am loved,
a consequence of not sinking –
swim freely.
The temperature plummets
within, and still knee deep, I am caught
in the ice of limbo
like a reluctant, unbaptised infant
who already knows its own mind.
Today, it is not as simple; revisited
once again, by dark clouds that come
to smother me with their words –
they take their place in the queue
in this time lapse of a snowy day
where whiter clouds come and go,
but like my words they are seldom
realised, and so I have to withdraw
into a quiet blackness – the Narnia sheen
of glistening reason is too bright,
too stark, too vivid when shouts scream
from it.
The pool of unhurried water is a starkly
black dilation –
of a welcoming eye – the pupil inside
this giant O.
I fall into its gaze, and like yours
it swallows me up.

Dreaded Whispers

Strokes of moonlight smother
the inflorescent
whispers of the smoke bush –

fighting, but wavering against twilight’s
ghostly dreams,
it drapes the water,
pondering depth and death,

and, whereupon streaks of my childhood run
wildly ‘til they bleed into the perfect pink wash –
disrupted only briefly by daubs of
my more morbid notions –

a thousand indigo butterflies
dotted like inky death
become pinned to the eerie flatness of still water
and life –

finally, my drowning memories
are absorbed by stagnant fluid –
the whispers are hushed in the black, dead air
where mosquitoes live instead,
and for the first time, I begin to thrive.

Dream Like Dali

Picture source: Salvador Dali 1904 – 1989

Majestically, she strode to the edge of sun baked
sand, like an hourglass held up by time,
before she became still; her long legs equidistant

man lay heel to toe with a savage sun –
humanity encrusted with parched earth,
it had partially eaten him –

a dried out white dove clung
to an exposed ribcage; a much needed perch
for a wasted observer
tired of flying,
tired of singing,
lost in his search for peace.
Its feathers, etched from
fine, dried clay – were fissure
like veins devoid of faith – baked
outside of death,
badly in need of rest.

Her elongated shadow buried
them both before she knelt on the earth
for water to pour from dainty,
silver rivulets
that ran her body,
which was smooth
and flowing sand

he watched her rise,
striking the sky
with her cool, black silhouette
but on the floor it lay
outstretched – as an amber pool
of honey;
he placed in it his hand
to taste her

immediately, he was quenched, fed. Arid skin
of dust and clay fell away, as did the shell of the dove,
which had replaced his heart –
its wings shattered
into a thousand pieces like baby soft powder
dusting the gritty, sparkling floor

in the breeze, billowing white clouds
conjured a magnificent
topaz bird; its plumage was a thousand lights
of peaceful nights held in its tail eyes
of beautiful iridescence –
tail eyes that had once glimpsed peace
in a thousand colours: turquoise, ocean green
and gold …

quill feathers wafted the zircon grains
of the sand, writing new rules,
posturing and reshaping –

beautiful but cruel foundations of peacock ore
too brittle to walk on, created swank waves
of peacock blues,

and it strutted till a thousand feathers
fell on the sand
rising once more as blood red poppies
that poured in an avalanche from the gaping
mouths of soldiers still inside tin helmets –
grown men like babes still fighting
inside their dreams

he tried to pick the wild flowers for her
but barbed, razor wire snagged
his crumbling fingers,
and hidden behind those were children’s faces
pressed against wire mesh
on the shores of green, unpleasant lands lapped by oceans
that gulped and gagged; force fed a rigorous diet
of helplessness and hope
each time sand was flipped inside the hourglass

he gripped her waist,
but, his reflection caught on her glass bosom,
it shattered her hourglass frame

she was released

a thousand more grains of sand
flowed like the salt
of his tears – sprinkling gently
from a watering can’s wise rose
to try to feed the presumption of green
leaves between his toes

his flaking sinews were pulled
to his chest; he wore a crude hole
where the dove had nestled –
dust stung his eyes
and, his tattered hands rose, forming a bridge
that the sun rode across
to join him at his journey’s end

red jewel fish swam ahead of her
in shoals of beating hearts –
riders corralled the sand storm’s cloth
approaching like a whirling dervish;
her titian hair draped those black, almond desert eyes,

and their glinting sunlit flecks
consumed time in their frenzy –
she placed the convergence of jewel fish; a plump,
red heart,
within his rib cage,

she was a belly dancer for a while
on the sand’s hypnotic gyrations
prompting creatures with a spin of time
to play music
inside of their shells

her lips were kissed by
one thousand butterflies, and her open palms
let loose a chorus of titanium white doves;
all of the notes to harmonise with man’s discord –
all willing one more time to fly away
in a relentless search for peace and to sing
for another one thousand years –

time enough, she thought, before they’d need
a place to rest

Corridors

Picture source unknown

I say goodbye
holding your hand,
desperately searching
for raw comfort,
but from clay cold skin and defeated flesh,
words will no longer form, nor
draw me close.
You hold a smile,
and it squeezes my heart softly
with a palpable
sense of who I am and who we were.
I think you have just found a dream
inside of death, and see a vision
higher than we, one rich in vitality
for your journey or destiny –
I don’t believe we are
really saying goodbye,
and so, sweet dreams, my love –
stay far from errant shadows –
so I can see you
on the other side
.

Song for a Bluebird

Picture source: art for CRUK: Anta Nabonne

walk me to the end
of love, let us be love

fold me where the
seams are stitched

edges brought closer
till there is no end

play me until the piano
aches, just as drifting sighs

start dancing, and crooning
violins stop playing

lift me like a hope
seeking light from dust

hold me with your beauty
like a soul on fire

let me be the risk you take
dance me to the edge

wait with me until the end
of love, let us be love.

Burning Both Ends

Unknown source

A
flicker,
a stare,
fires the
column,
bled bare,
by the pale
yellow, violet
flame
as

its gliding wax
grips and its rhythmic drip sets fast,
and not unlike our game.
The Slowness of time
runs with our thoughts down
this vine as I tease the quick
with scorched fingers. And, as
is your want, you navigate me,
and like moths, we
self destruct when we linger.
A stolid breath of air soon releases our
stares, and we flinch in the
flame’s parting sigh;
its sulphuric stench from the quickening
wrench, reminds me of that
stark light – as
sleeping birds hum
and a candlelit morn draws nigh.

Tone

I have been here at WordPress for five years apparently. Thanks to everyone who has supported my efforts, and those in passing, who have stopped a while. Be safe out there until this surreal period of our lives is over. Take care.

guitar-touch-instrument-guitarist

With every sound
of each word uttered
there is pause, a silence –
as if waiting for the touch
of a lover – distant still,
but out there.

Until such time,
words float as poetry,
lightly wrought
on cool staves,
only now just stirring;
no tone is forced, just harsh
and breathy –

they wait, and would wait
forever,
as every song, like love,
is incomplete
until it hears its heart echo.

Remembrance

Picture souce: pickist. com

‘Miss me not ‘til I have died,
then always remember me…’

In the early glow of dawn,
silence rolls on the bosom
of heavy clouds –
solemn doves in a new formation
accompany sunrise, hearing
the sound of an abundance of rain.

Above tumulus soil,
peace remains a warm blanket
for all who were lost there
since death is an aching cold,
and mired in these fatigued
and embattled lands;
lands where life spilled into dying,
and courage became mulch
to the seeds that were sown.
Acres of crimson mist undulate
to waft forever in cool breezes;
its pitch black eyes peer
though the ruddy murk,
we feel the pulse of its stoic heart,
and, we are touched by the dew atop each poppy’s blade.
All are there to remind us still,
and without words
often drowned by time.

Raindrops sheet in silver threads
to lace our silent tears. And, as the flight
of doves let loose like windswept petals,
to surrender one by one, we humbly
promise

to always remember,
and shame on us if we fail.