I am sorry for breaking your heart

Under the Indian Sun my heart raced and my feet ran to the freedom of the East.
Without the cares in the world that bother the citizen of the West. I became humbled and happier for it.
I simplified my view, remembered I was made from skin and bones, and that money is only half chance…

I did yoga by the lake and the lions woke us before the gong that summoned us to a breakfast of banana and chai before our lunchtime Samba feast, and there you were. You stood tall and bent like spaghetti with our spindly legs, and there you decided you would love me and woo me until I submitted to your undeniable charms, until I had no choices left to make because for a while you stole my mind, my senses I was alone, you were my words.

Off we went on a sojourn that would takes us to the tops of the mountains and back to wild ocean. And all the while I tried to get my mind back under my ownership, but you kept it safely in a box with key and it wasn’t to be.

We whiled away our days contented but a fire was brewing.
Until one day I knew it was time to go back to the people who loved me more than anyone else ever would, except maybe you.
And so I flew, home to where I came from with memories almost too rich for words, and sometimes my memories gave me a lump in my throat.

I am sorry I broke your heart, that I ran to the world I knew from the world I loved more.

I am sorry for breaking your heart.

And he asked me: how did man discover coffee?

In Ethiopia a man and a woman walking on the outskirts of a rain forest stumbled on a rock and calamtied to the hot dry ground beneath their feet. Upon the ground he and she spied a beetle bug or a similar shaped entity that aroused their suspicions and they grimaced. Believing it to be alive and expecting it to take flight with its wings or scuttle away on its legs, the man and woman threw it to the fire that they had made earlier in the day, in the hope of catching and roasting prey. Without expectation, from the fire, there came the most aromatic incense that overtook their minds and beheld their senses, mesmerized were they by the potency of the burning bean.

Time past by and the embers of the fire sporadically glowed orange and red like a lotus flower bobbing in deep, clear water; until it faded completely. Then the man and the woman gathered more of the beetle shaped beads that grew from the trees, to take home to roast so beguiled were they by its smell.

Time went on and the smell had cast its spell. They were thrown back in to fire and from whence came the same smell that had captivated the sense of the man and the woman. This time, these burnt beans were ground down, strained through water and prepared to become the drink we know as coffee and drink out of pure pleasure.

In time, coffee grew and became better known by the African countries who spilled their ‘beans’ to the Middle East, Far East , Southern Europe and beyond.

The cave

The day we entered the cave in the dead of my fear, I reverted back to an earlier time of the room on the eleventh floor and the fear of the lift that squeaked and so we took the stairs. The cave gaped low in parts and exuded an ice cold hand that brushed our faces and bodies as we quietly crept by, hoping to go unnoticed. We didn’t want to disturb the loneliness of the edge of the mountain that was so high and remote that few would venture here, even fewer would hear you scream. As we tip toed and balanced trying the avoid slipping on the damp ground we made our way to the opening, from where you can appreciate the gorge created by the river below. It occurred to me: this is the first day of the rest of my life. For there were not any screams that day and the weather remained bright, that we could appreciate -in all its palpable splendour and from a great height-: what lay bare naked before us was life without fear.

From such a perspective the views were impressed upon Yellow as unique, and that she would never have beheld it within her gaze and later her memories, had she not swallowed her fear and ventured into the cave in the first place. As she looked below to the river that gushed below, splashing, coursing its way to the sea and making the trees and the fish swim faster. Above the sky was moving with roving clouds, fluffy and at intervals shading the sun and making us cold. The ravine and the raw rock, the trees that lent precariously over the edge, with their branches that sway creating movement.

This was the first day of the rest of her life.

The grey is lifting

Hit by a truck.
She lay on the ground, clinically dead to the world, unable to hear anything.
She awoke but in total deafness, she heard nothing.

In her awakened state she was held down by his grey curtain that hung on her shoulders and made her unable to stand up straight or tall.

But now she feels her curtain lifting, letting a little light back in.
The grey is lifting.

Y Capel (the chapel) 2010 UNEDITED.

Y Capel (the chapel)

Very raw and very familiar was the funeral that took place to a back drop of ancient sea weathered mountains in Wales. I could see that the connections of the people ran deep and gushed like the rivers of Gwynedd, profound and rich, as rich and as solid as the colour green that surrounded them, in all her varieties. Otherwise, you could say, it was a village that was beset with eyes that are now alive, and watched the day’s proceedings with a moping gape. Eyes filled with preoccupation, full of recognition; as old and as tall as the trees, unhurt, undamaged protective and old. The congregation was more than proverbial.

The people carried their smiles as their faces dimpled and were coloured the shade of chalky rose; their eyes filled and emptied with their tears. My thoughts are distracted to think of love, life and the pain we will all know. The clock ticked by and there was black, in the larger sense of the word, everywhere. Later, lilies and roses and even a posy, would decorate the mood that had begun to hang like your heavy curtain, threatening the sunlight that dared to enter the sky.

The chapel was little, squat and the colour of tea and biscuits. It was rain washed and rugged like the mountains that revealed its grey rocky interior. It sat on a jagged winding road surrounded by green grass that curved and looked like swaying French beans. The grass was dotted with daisies, dandelions, buttercups and tall grass, the feathers on long stalks. Mum saw a feather fall from the chapel roof. She recalls the same such happening on similar sober occasions. And nobody felt dandy like the dandelions today, because we only half recognised the familiar flower through hazy moments of stillness.

And the grass swayed because the wind continued its gentle unobtrusive gust. The day was in weather the same as any other June day; warm and sky blue: it was beautiful. All around were triangular mountains, edgy and raw, and they looked perfectly composed. The clouds were stretched and murky though still white, as they danced sullenly around Snowdon ’s peak, like muddled thoughts wandering, perhaps aimlessly for a while.

The minister in his robes looked like there were fish and chips in his belly, he was loud and his voice echoed, smiled like a happy cast of jelly. Apple red were his cheeks and he stomped his feet heavily, like a candy stick at Christmas, red and white striped. He has the perfect demeanour.

Little, squat and bare was the chapels insides; until we filled it brimming to the roof with our voices, and the space expanded with our song. The chapel was filled, just like an overindulgent stomach that is filled with cake at a tea party; feeling sick, adjusting its clothes to accommodate an uncomfortable pain, and still, the pain lingered.

Calon Lan, we sang and now the song sings synonymous with you. In rows of wooden seats little trickles of tears tricked their way down the sore cheeks of the collective. These were collected in tissues dabbed and dotted from our faces stored in pots, that would sit neatly on our inside shelf. The words of the song floated high, like reeling away from a cotton reel, unwinding; to find their way to the ceiling and yonder still, like a kite. Out of the chapel and into the sky, high with the buzzards, the red kites, the herons. The words were seen hopping to the clouds; because in this song of timeless rest, was your childhood long gone and favourite colour kept. I am sure; all this wonder emerges before you.

You are in the cloud, teardrops shaped by the rain, in the weather and bright as the sun, in the mountains…in past river veins.

Dad stared forward, into his space, his safer place, almost not there, but to return when it was time to leave the squat, tea coloured chapel. We drove the winding road to the field…The stone walls, the clean air…the sea in sight; the mountains you knew that held you tight. We dropped gently, red and yellow roses. The soil made it real, made it less dreamlike. Made it suddenly unfair.

da bo anti Eileen, da bo.

I wrote this in 2010 after the funeral of my Aunty. I found it recently. It is uploaded unedited.

What is a broken dream?
A lead balloon?
An Angel has flown by.

I met a man in the subway I knew him once, his hair hung over his face, his hood protected him from the world but I saw him. I stopped him and talked to him and he complained at me about life and the expectations the world places on our shoulders. I squint. I don’t agree. We are propped up with ideas, conventions, human construction. I don’t agree. ‘Real’ world. No, stop and think, you possess a mind, it is powerful.

He told me he wants to run. Run away on a treadmill fast but never getting anywhere. I think to myself he should brush his hair. Maybe then his woes would go. But no. he told me about his Catholic mother, her intolerance, her rejection. Then he was alone. A boy, young without guidance he wandered into adulthood without grievance. This is many years ago now. Don’t look back in anger you needn’t say. He doesn’t. He is calm, a good guy. A good Catholic guy. But he doesn’t believe in God. Is that OK? Probably. Anything goes these days.

He left the subway at about 4 o’clock, chasing an errand, an errant vocation. The phone chimes and I see I am invited back to join to modern world. I glaze over. I shudder. I think about his complaints and I think about how ungrateful we are.And I think about the world we live. There is no wonder we feel like we live in a state of broken dreams. We are in a pressure cooker. A rat race. The personification of capitalism. The veins of which we can see: blue and bright and running through the streets, running our world.

I watched him across the way, he was heading in a directionless direction down a street and didn’t look back. I filled him with a moment of hope.But surely it is not enough. Surely we will only be content when we stop letting something so fierce as society control our lives. Something that will always have such a hold on us anyway, but not this: not our happiness too. It is such tyranny. Such an intricate web that it is not simple and not straightforward. We cannot untangle.

But as his silhouette became more and more distant and the cars carried on, the drivers and passengers oblivious of our exchange I think to myself YES we live in world that has us like puppets on a string. And Yes: there are powers at work that control us and we are pitiless in the face of this.

But I am still happy to be alive even if we are unhappy with the powers that override us. We don’t live in the darling buds of may.
As irreverent as our society is, we can at least acknowledge that we are alive.

Yellow normal again

Yellow wrote a letter.
She confided she felt ‘normal’ again.
This rung hard on her head.
She didn’t know what she meant.
She dug deep and tried to find,
What did she mean by ‘normal again.’

What happened to Yellow in the months before
Wasn’t abnormal. It was sad.
Pain Yellow already knew was a part of life.
She didn’t feel normal again:
She felt less sad.
To a state that is acceptable.
No one minds when you are sad.
They mind when you are sad too long.

Hurry up Yellow.
Don’t cry.
And so Yellow stopped.

Normal again? No.
Everything is within the realm of normality
If you are still clinging to reality itself.

Yellow realised even though people are kind,
Life is cruel.
Society is fast.
Has no time for tears that last.

So she let go of her sadness.
But she decided,
She has never been abnormal.
Just sad.

The tears of the revolution.

Is there a revolution inside us all?
Like,
A fervor waiting to be released
If we are oversupplied with emotions
DO:
We explode
WILL:
Our minds combust
Like:
Golden gulls flying through the sky
OR
A sunflower meeting the suns eye-
A fire work of colour against an indigo blanket.
What if it takes place, And
it’s not according to YOUR plan?
Do you revolt?

He takes it: all you have
In one fell swoop
Cannily arranged words
Attack.
His weapon.
He grins.

The viva in us,
Switched ON
Yellow continues her internal dialogue.
It is like the thorn inside
Our rose shaped heart:
Pricking against out skin
Our dignity, pressing on our own sense of value
Asking: do not devalue me with your words.
???

You throw words in my face
Like splinters, shards of decaying drift wood.
They land in my head, my cheeks, my lips.
The blood, it pours from every new oropheus
THIS IS:
My newly mangled face.

I’m painted red
After a brush with the law.

But this time my brain is red too
And my eyes cry blood.

My tears are red-
Seeping with the stuff that’s inside.
These are the tears of my revolution.

They are red and made of fire
The fire that burns inside.
The fire that no one-
Not even the rain can
Extinguish.

Yellow and weather men

The man made of thunder sat at the table and began discussing the weather with Yellow.

Lightening appeared a while later, and Thunder began grumbling before it became a proper growl, like the angry wolf that used to live next door.

The deep drone of guitar music passed through the walls from a distant world, mixing with the noise of thunder and the light of lightening began to spark and the light bulbs flickered. From the outside the window would portray a crazy disco of white light.

Smoke came from their ears and Yellow quivered and ran up the narrow steep steps above, locking the door behind her, drawing the curtains.

What feels like a while later, Yellow asks: What is pain anyway, rather rhetorically and immediately reminded herself of her the new found strength she found when she faced the little tiny death that is now a tree.

She unlocked the door, climbed back down the steep, narrow stairs and Yellow started to rain big and violent tears at thunder and lightening until a fury so intense weather broke out in the small square room.

Gradually dancing out of thunder, lightening and tears, the electricity in the room graduated until it was little more than a storm in a tea-cup- until it was as if it had never been – and seemingly suddenly the birds returned to the trees and began whistling and the light in the room changed to bright blue with rainbow freckles bouncing and skipping across the white wall that came from the catcher, that swayed in the wind that came from the open window.

Yellow sat with thunder but lightening had made her flight. And thunder was more of an afterthought and no longer grumbling but quiet and still, like a fluffy white cloud gliding through a peaceful blue sky.