Sunday, July 26, 2015

Half-Life, Anthropomorphic

All used up, all fallen down,
Electrons spinning out of town,
Man at half-mast

All tucked in, all trotted out,
Arrhythmia wind’ing ‘fore the bout
Man at half-mast

All beat out, all battered in
Gnarly contraption in fettered skin
Man at half-mast

Ageful apparitions form the substance
            Of garrulous images sliding past,
Inclined to contend for sublimation,
            From solid to ether-man at half-mast.

Half awake, half asleep,
Half a man upon the mast;
Half dying, realizing
What can’t be made to last.

Half gone, half here,
Half turned into the wind;
Half losing and finding
What can’t be lost again.

Half wise, half wit,
Half knowing every name;
Half sorry, half hopeful,
Half playing in the rain.

Old prospects drift into dreams,
            But all too fast,
Dreams can turn to memories
            For a man at half-mast.

                                                            by Ken Paxton

                                                                        Dec. 2001

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

This Adramyttium Earth

This Adramyttium Earth possesses no soul, so it seeks to devour ours.


Our uplifted gaze belies our truculent fixation within gravity. We dream of flight as if it is redemption, while all our waking day we show the soil the soles of our feet as they crease the craton, ancient and unforgiving though it may be.

Birds course through contrary winds for they are wind themselves. Airstream bodies flex hollow bones: a pivot of the head, flare of the tail, salute of the smallest pinion – all these carve an unseen furrow as though sculpting space. What beauty might that be… the inversion of a bird’s flight through air as polished stone?

High overhead they drift under the puffy evening clouds which part here to show an opaline blue, and there to reveal a tawny amber, stained glass windows into an eternal evening. The sky is as light as the heart’s mortality heavy.

Eternity receives our souls in as many ways as the rock hound unearths his minerals. A moment’s reach into a rocky brook retrieves a glossy serpentine. A sweaty dig continues for hours until the sharp ring of a shovel signals the unseen ore. We are collected tonight or tomorrow, mined in a minute or a month… or lifted one cell at a time from sand to star.

What we imagine is the flood, a driving irresistible force that smacks into us and we are never the same. What we experience is the rain, one drop at a time rinsing dust from flesh, flesh from spirit. We emerge transfigured unaware: that which was urgent and vital is nothing… that which was nothing is essential.


This is not our expectation; it seems not our nature. Indeed we are claimed but not owned by this Adramyttium Earth: to crush it and to be crushed, to bind it and to be bound, to release it and to be released.