Death of a Season
The low sun drops its jaundice wings; they pierce through the blunt glass of train carriage windows, their motion as light as insects on scented lashes. A prefigured cloud murmurs as it falls like an avalanche. I sit on a hollow seat, woven with damp and famished hearts. Speed and precision give way to a padlock. I am amongst people, brown leather shoes, books, and coats. Against a curtain of burgundy a cloud wafts and breaks its brittle, nervous bones. The padlock is mistaken for the dual blades of shears closing around the flesh of bulbs and flower heads. To the left, my eyes fill with the tones of withered trees rushing past with the assault of winter. These tears are no petals the sea bed should see. It falls from the roof of a bungalow in Chichester . The minds interlock around me, creating a chain of rusted, black salt. Inch-thick worms burrowing up and up. It is important to note the difference between the cathedral itself – much more than a work of art, rather, a rising stem in a hurricane of sighs – and its architectural face. It retains pieces of collective intensity. A glass-footed gull hovers above my attic. It waits for the fog. The process of severing a shell from an interior, an ‘essence’, always yields a density of freedom from which can be made the shards of a new experience. This chain endangers me; it allows my thoughts to act only as an enveloping aura. My hair falls from a basket, it trails from the moon. The new is the mode of diversification. I become entangled, suffocated by the simulacrum of this chain; it allows me no autonomy. A river presses on my glass, my blue frankincense sweeping like a tide. The senses contained in matter, holed in like bright eyes welded to the wooden darkness of a forest, are innately flexible; they remain lucid even after transferral. By the side of the tracks stands a metal barrier. A hand, blue with pushing veins, chariots of skin, cracks in the heat. It has been 24 hours since a pink rosehead was removed from a table in the bungalow. By itself it is insignificant, but when doused in heavy dew, it takes on a new form. Looking into the eyes of fingertips I see suicide cowering next to a frozen portal. I placed the head of a rose in the furry arms of a bush in front of a four-paned window. It gleams with a wilderness of colours under a microscope. Chalky cliffs, insects caught by a hare, these are frames built on dust. Looking for the veins of cirrus in the ghostly brown bark of a tree is best left for the poets. The individual is unaware, it is through a merging, continuous bivouac of solitude that meaning becomes intelligible.
Webs forged in the honey coloured air
Dense fingers, plumb-ripe, curled
Around plump coils of hazel hair.
In order to shatter the audacity of one body, another must possess entirely the singular glow of its transcendence. The train passes a small church. Beads hang from arthritic necks, the visage of gnarled souls. The smell of mould wafts through the window, past the grazing stumps of stalks, through the myth of the angelus and into my lemonade. From the church building emanates a spectral shower, a gospel of imprisoned thoughts. Along the ear whorls I wish to gain poetic light, nourishment of gauzy, delicate hairs as they fall. I see silver packets, tangled roots, dancing clods of soil, in a ditch beside the tracks. The yellow panopticon signposts fright. The sky guards it’s secret behind icy walls wriggling like grey scales. Tears of blue manage to taint a menagerie of haze. The stroke of a twig upon water leaves the impressioned grin of a magpie upon dewy leaves. The glass that holds my lemonade is clouded with crystals, resentful of being placed on a wooden desk. I see the open window of a greenhouse gently flapping in the breeze. Eyes dried by the wind.
Fumes with no distinct cause
No essence, rise up to the level
Of my eyes, encircled by glimpses
Of voices and faces, a diptych of
Metamorphosis throwing objects
Into non-reality. It paralyses me
As the sun sets like a group of tiny
Fetid crowns on the heads of
Its glass is coated in pale shavings of moss, a cloak, the shining skin of a frog. I undress by the water, retracing the smiles. The train now passes from the threading fields to barren mud flats deserted by the sea. Laces of gloom and green fall silently upon our hill. In the deadpoint centre of my room a triangular light shines like a decaying tooth in a mouth filled with smoke. Moving back onto the streets, I see bare torsos of people and trees, they stand as columns of white marble under the warm fingers, particles forming hands of light. Utopian energy covers the wings that tremble. It grips me from within, stopping only to enhance the thrill of invitation. Inside of tunnels, roofing branches and ashen leaves, a stump stands like the grave of a poet sucking egoistically at the worms and weeds. I have come to reclaim the magic of death. I feel the blue and yellow scales forbidding me to move, muscles draped from the body. In amongst the sails, passing a harbour, I dream of a face reciting poems.
I stood exposed
Like a tunnelling rose
At the foot of an open grave.
The howl of a dog would move me to tears if my eyes were not dried; as for the drained wells they are, they possess neither remedy nor incitement. Now, walled in by a muddy encumbrance of thin, encrusted webs, I feel trapped. The doors of your eyes slowly open with the migration of dawn. The peaks of rooftops protrude like heads of cats from long grass leaving the voluminous azure untouched. Engines as black as crows abandoned for the white shell of time, left in heaps. I become unduly aware of a knock coming from the ceiling, the floor of the sky. Going through tunnels I feel the bricks brush against me, infecting me with efflorescence. I pace up and down with the brown eyes of robins. It offers me a languorous pact to which a constant and painful fidelity binds me. The city bulges, yawns like a waking giant.
A silver point darts
With eyes of snakes
By the rain.
The song of a milkfloat leaps past the door, spraying, its cue taken from deep in my throat. Church spires graze in the sky, knotted as scribbled furze bushes. A fistful of thirsting flame vanishes before me. Another harbour: gulls so bleak and inviting stood one-legged in the mud. Balls of turquoise have riveted my sight. Amongst these painful windows I feel on my arm the warm blood escaping from a penny-sized wound. Everyday the shell of a boat stares me straight in the eye. A portrait of death, the final leaf falls. A spilling drain, shrill cries of insects bleating. A jet black heron, majestic and moribund, perched on the ribs of a boat.
In blue rays
I remove the scab, leaving it on the carpet to be trampled by mites. From behind the iron fence I see oil-brown pebbles waiting to cushion the sea. Emerald nests house the mouths of sea urchins poised like shawls of cress. My mind takes me out of the door. My body responds with a kind of secrecy that evokes the idea of water. This morning it holds the fervour of death, it sits lower than usual, clouding its mirrored surface. The sky is the falling corpse of a finch. Finally, a spirit of rebellion seeps into my pores, as yet untainted by the auriferous voice of nihilism. The tracks are now bare, plain to the sight, merely a symptom of synecdoche. Its feathers are strewn upon the air as pebbles rolling through folds of water. I should remark that I make no movement from my sedentary position, for I am only the sigh of an unhealthy process. They lead to the innards, the gentle walls of the train station. The grooves of the eye sockets are paler than the laughing air above. I turn to gaze on the square of glass, shaking under the strike of the wind whose colour expands around hypotenuse chimneys. This is the part I most dread, the revelation of sight sucking like an ulcer, destroying everything I have forged.
The curve of a beak
Is stretching with long
All of a sudden a face leans in on the glass, pressing a forehead so as to be carved in the permanency of my mind. 2007, the year of hollowness, sympathy graced me for the first time. Blades of grass stretch and unite, forming a net to break the fall of this plummeting bird. The face is slow and mechanical, fatigued, and it ripples on the pillowing air. Ianthe used to sit in café’s peering out at workmen. Its feet, upturned, burn in the cool air, bedecking the vapid hedgerows in dew. My breath threatens to give me away, its colour, filled with white plasticity, spills over fragments of jet black cloth. She saw their minds as architectural stages in the process of creation.
And damning rooves.
I take great pains to silence it. Ianthe darts like a magpie spreading herself across pavements. Lights of orange burst forth, shattering mossy inhalations. The face now fixed on me begins to swivel on its axes. She had fleshy eyes surrounded by brown whips of lashes, bordering tints of yellow, car lights in darkness.
Thudding hands fall
Eloquently on foreheads
Raked with crisp hair.
I know it belongs upon me and throughout me, but I cannot allow it a place in my heart. Her light red mouth hid columned incisors, curved and grave, inviting eyes to be swallowed whole. A populace of limpits hugging their own graves. It occurs to me that my breath was held for too long and I may have enticed death. Her hair was a large, brown, ghostly body.
Against holes in glass walls
I peer without seeing
The blow-back of the world.
Death, being a fissured film, allows me to elope in its light. In the sun it gives off an air of hubris, striking like teeth into a baby’s knees. Embroidery curses the buttons of bugs, the headstones of water that make up my foundations. I feel airy for days, failing to realise that I am circumscribed by my own footprints. In winter blizzards, each hair used for fuel a drop of seasonal regret. I see in you the split soul, spoiled like a dove in a stove. I have reached a point of safety and I owe this to my close proximity to death. And her neck, remarkably inlaid with the blueness of veins gathering below the surface, emitted an odour that materialised into crimson beads. The lilac of the heart filters through sandy bones left to rot at the docks. I have left the house, its impression dampening itself like water trickling over plants. Always wearing a barbarous black coat that refuses even to unravel at the neck to allow her strong jaw bones a spiked crown from which to burst forth, she rejects all but solitude. Saltblue eyes hover in front of hymns sung to a mirror. I enter the garden. Ianthe, being an unwound thread, became mythical. Shells of turtles collided with fountains of souls. The lawn is made up of fecund blades that fight against death as a form of ivy wrapping its scudding arms around everything. She was extremely well read. Mountains bleating across trenches of sky. The air is warm and splintered with a wind that evokes its faded savagery, drowned like a lily. She carved out of herself an ideal rather than an act.
My only son
Parts his lips
At the bottom of the garden looms a web, interspersed with jewelled, burgundy patches shining like ringed fists. Her life was fraught with atrementous hives and snow-capped peaks. Mollify this lapis lazuli, this breath of molasses, lugubrious hole in my sleeve. Below stands the wilted skeleton of a dwarfed willow. Eloquence, for her, had become the highest virtue, all that remained palpable. Leafless alleyways appetise the crumbs of automatism. When I venture – the act is as symbolic as swallowing mirrors, the senses of reality – to allow my vision the fluidity it needs to flicker to the left, I am confronted with a large, raging willow, as real as it is shallow of colour. A turbid mesh, a lace of iron covering a plumed leg; she had an air of fresh morality about her. I stand with my ear to the moon, my rain to the ground, and my grave to the weeds. It lives in a mask faded by perception. Ianthe always felt the inward scratching of nihilism. I spend the coins of my soil on liquid breaths and coiled fruits. What the mask falls prey to, that is, becomes a conception of, is the density of immediate colour. She’d always felt a longing to escape.
And I notice the clogged
As snakes caught in
These are a syntheses of yellows, reds, pinks, and a layer of non-colour that appears at the borders between soul, sense, and imagination. She’d rise in the room with eyes locked in concentration or sadness. I shake off a current of equal blackness as a burnt eyesocket. Raising my head with a tilt, the fiery arms of a tree just before metamorphosis erupt with a gentle movement. Watching her in conversation was mesmerising. The purity of a parental eye escapes from the sight of my mind. Returning them to a fixed point – a field of glacial refusal – I am cross-hatched into the throat of a robin. She was carried everywhere with red, flowing robes. The paws of cats shiver across spines. The robin is perched in amongst a dozen bamboo stalks as they snare the wings of flies, becoming marble in the air. It is, perhaps, best for those not having made her acquaintance, to picture her (as angry as sheets smothering the moon) at night in a garden at the foot of Chichester cathedral.
The apocryphal light
As distant as the
Origin of oranges
Swells her eyes.
The robin watches a butterfly waft past. The lights stream from globular tunnels entwined in the pavement (the cries of faltering souls whinnying from inside plastic bags); a wind smothers the homeless resting under holy walls; a rectangular light squirms and becomes a stone limb rising from the earth with muscles pressing on the black roof of the sky. Paperclips wade through countless rosettes belonging to heaven’s dead. The butterfly is damaged and at the point of either apotheosis or destruction. Rain skids across her head. The flesh of cheeks enfold their liquid mouths – the sea! A swilling toilet bowl! It is aware that its ‘essence’ is an idea passed into materiality and that its poetry has been corroded by oily shells.
O circular predator
Keep in mind when
You extend your
My ancient mourning.
Towering walls carved and fondled by thin stonemason’s hands. A bottle bank filled with echoes. The wind moves a branch in an unfamiliar way and I am enclosed in myself once again. The rain crowds the air, falling ridged over ponds and rotten benches; Ianthe prepared for the elusive, internal revolution. An ocean-blue blanket creeps over its eyes. I bend down and see an open patch in the interplay of colour that reigns, a horizontal void promising and refusing its secret. These particular circumstances are the best providers of more than an inauspicious fear of her person. Crystal sphinxes trickle on dull rivers. I must enter a floating realism. She became, once recognised, alive in every dimension, a mere blend of chords thrown on backgrounds of fluidity. Beauty is awaiting sacrifice by the gods of language. I have pierced another field of sight in which all but my sense of touch is mute.
I hail to the frost
Of the self
Across my violets.
There are jagged strands of stalks running freely through my fingers. I attempt to follow the water they bring to bare upon my mind. I plow through the foam and arrive at the crest – vibrant snouts of froth and kelp, enlaced in chaos. This vision fails as a bookshelf interrupts the point of climax. It manufactures my awareness, making me conscious of a subcultural desire. My hand clamps upon a warm, rectangular object. It possesses a rigid spine, bringing forth an aroma of phantomic liveliness. I must go inside and consume it.
From a small hole that’s been burrowed sprouts a kind of gel, blue tipped and circular. They called it ‘Winter’ and it has since been used to cover our faces.
Blake Everitt © 2011