escarpment

the years I lived slept

autumn beginning of winter

to the rising tone of the trees

above me on my green hill

the wind whipping through

a gentle roar that never grew

to a full howl or decline

until the snows came

bringing their hush

stoppage to the day

the wind the dark night

all now in half light or blind glare

foot paw prints that appeared

disappear

of white ghosts gone to sleep

burned out

there was a time

my ancestors say to me

late in the day

when the moon is low

the wind is sleeping

the sand ceases to move

of a time

when shut up

was never heard

we would bang our drums

sing until morning

or the singing was done

in this way our hands

reached back all the way

to those gone before

& then came

the time of shut up

we were not to talk

sing of these things

that connected us

to those who no longer

walk the day

& like the fire

before you now

growing colder

this is how they

burned us out

ended our culture

dreaming of Arizona

just a patch of sand

where I sat for a while

out of sight sound of the road

the wind whispering my ears

couple of guys I met earlier

filling up with water

supplies at the gas station

telling me of living in a cabin

on a trail off’f the side road

miles from anywhere here

& I knew if I there was a way

to go do that

instead

we’re Arizona dreaming

sitting in the sand

listening to the wind

today

for flying into the wind

close to that edge

that I never wanted to contemplate

been there before

& there is nothing here

can make me go back again

not that I care for me

about the looking over

seeing an end to all of this

but those left behind

can never understand

why those choices

feel close to the divine

though I know love is not there

when nothing much matters anymore

seems to be a struggle

clutching at the air

& if I give up now

on all of you

all of me

all I would be

is one more said

they cared

& let go

for flying into the wind

turn blue

the air turns cooler

& I think of you

as my hands turn blue

wondering if you too

are standing somewhere

nose lifted catching the air

damp of rusty leaves underfoot

would you care now to take a look

notice the seasons change

to catch see in your face more age

I’d prefer to think of you as then

you to mind me as a younger man

& the rain lifts goes away

my nostalgia rises no time to play

such is my sweet autumn seasons

drifting thoughts forever pleasing

& you are gone forever on the wind

lapses happen

the bouncing Czech

(he was Ukrainian but hey the name stuck)

left around 1 am to walk home across town

decently oiled talked out & fed

at 2 he called me:

its cold out there I had my collar up earphones in

& the streets were empty y’know so…

I let rip with a series of farts

& just after the track ended I heard giggles

turning round there were these 2 girls….

today it was my turn

after a long ride i headed out to the can

in the gas station

& having a pee I let go of this pent up wind

I’d not dared let go in case accidents happen

what I hadn’t seen was this kid about six

had followed me in was washing his hands

there behind me

as I go to leave the kid is talking to his Dad

& pointing at me….

who looked over & laughed

did that thing with his hands

‘what to say?’

& I was gone like the bouncing Czech

out of there & on my way

dead on the wind

winter had come

scythed everything to the ground

felled the flowers

leaving dried heads

hanging through the wire fence

& as I walked along the flint path

I thought of you

lying there on the bed

white underwear & already plotting

to kill me as best you could

& you who had promised love forever

as I drove the miles home

now gone to another

you talking me through long nights

as we plotted our way to love

that never quite came through

I never let any of you go

such is not my way

as I pull my collar tighter

against the bitter cold scour

making the flower heads bob

held tight to the wire

dead on the wind