A life in dreams
¿Dónde está, … dónde está tu niña amarga?
Federico Garcia Lorca- Romance Somnámbulo
Somewhere the soft wind slows, somewhere the soft wind stops
Where an old man sits under the light of the stars
And remembers the frogs singing of the apple births,
Or the virgins sequinning their backs with nettles
The copper bells are dreaming up her footsteps, still
Though the railings she caressed are not the green
Of flakes peeling away with the wane of the moon
If the sun tumbles from the tangles of his hair
To an open book of poetry, who will answer?
Who else has polished the trunk of the dying oak?
Who else has straightened the bodies of the seabed?
And kept a flame lit in the wax of her candle?
He is crying, the flesh of the watermelon
Tastes no sweeter than the blood of an extinct rose
That pours through the love in her mother’s name
Now he sleeps on a couch of cold steel, where her arms
Are torn linen streaming from an opal staircase
And a black butterfly floats from the bannister
Offering its residue of petrol and flames
Under gravestones she is calling, she is dancing
The oleanders sprout wild through her eyes
When a thief taps the window of the old man’s dreams
And slits the throat of the dawn
A poem in protest against the war on terror
Today twelve green jets dropped stars on Pakistan
Each one garlanded with blue eyes and emptiness
The flags of the west dined on the flags of the east
Still no one sang of the height of the mountains
No one strapped a tear to the back of a snowflake
And timed an exploding igloo with fists of sand
So the pretty boys must cube the Captain’s sugar
And stir the lime into his tea, before the pale night
Assaults them with his whip, with sieves and bandages
Because no one is chanting the rights of the mouth
No one is protecting acres of wild pomegranate
Or shall shepherd away the heads of dead donkeys
The millionaires will lunch on parades of waves
And stuff mint into the babies’ bottoms, happy
As the carousel rounds the gold in their pockets
No one is hunting the victims of polar bears
Or raising an ivory chapel laced with pearl
Because the drones don’t scream for the end of the drones
Because the one eyed man can’t see.
Charlie Baylis covers the lessons of absent teachers in Nottingham, England. His poetry and short stories have most recently appeared in SAW magazine and The Delinquent. He spends most of his spare time slightly adrift of reality He blogs, sporadically, here:theimportanceofbeingaloof.tumblr.com