I open one eye. It takes a while to open the other and I use the time to enjoy breathing... just being. How quickly I get to take this 'waking up in the morning' thing for granted - now that I'm physically in this really good patch.
I roll out of bed into a standing position. I learned this back at the rehab unit (donkeys years ago) after my op, it puts less pressure on the spine.
Gulp! Overwhelmed with giddiness I roll back down onto my bed. Standing is out. This might be a good time to acknowledge the pinchy feeling in my gut, that nasty nauseous sensation and my awareness of the stomach bug going around among friends and colleagues.
I have an iron gut, but the giddiness is really bad; enough to confine me to bed, except...
Oh yes, I am a swan! Oops I mean I'm not such an ugly duckling...no, no, not that. Not such a scrounging drain on this country's severely limited resources; not such a waste of space; not so stubby and brown, I'm one of the super heroes!
I look, I see...wheels. Wow! Wheeee! Oh yes, I am a swan/supercrip! How good it feels to roll back out of bed and into my chair - with a head so noble and high; ok, so today I take some shortcuts with the prep...less stretches, no adherence to my morning routine, but what the heck. I am a swan.
I roll. Life rocks, I roll on out into my day. Not such an ugly ducking...not I!
And still working in the arts...deaf, well almost, to the bird who passes me in the street, rolls her eyes, contorts her face in disgust and spits 'get that ...thing... (that's me); get that thing out of my way.'
Making future out of hope for tomorrow;
unpicking the past in an evolution of
revolution. The surprise weight of manners;
of universal co-existence; of care. The surprise
power of human-kind offering
choices. Leaving the old guard to its war games
while unobtrusively tucking them safely into
care homes where first do no harm gets
real meaning - learns to be trusted.
Bring on the new swans,
a lovin' those stubby and browns...
I say this.
Enough with the ducklings.
You say, you stutter, words
time still waits for - and deaf shapes,
slow thoughts; broken people,
the surprise wholeness where
no one claims the moral high ground
and no one
will be surprised when first
do no harm opens a way
for us all to be trusted.
bring on the new swans...
enough with the ducklings.
Move on back, move on back and
the windscreen wipers go swish
swish swish, move on back, move
on back and the wheels on the
bus go round and round, move
on back, move back on. Round and
round, move on back and the words
in my head go round and round,
move back on, jumbled up.
jumbled up, back on move.
Move back on, move on back,
words in my head are
falling out falling out
out words in my head are
falling out all day long.
I need more words;
words to keep the wolf at bay,
words to create barricades
against the cloaked doom.
Move on back, move back on
the words in my head
are falling out
out. I need more words,
no used words
Words that hold together
fastness to ward off
the grim unspoken;
the feeding wolf
defiant, even unto the dawn.
Falling out, I need more words.
I need hope words, when these
cannot exist it becomes
time to grasp
the knife. Cut
Complicit in the great epodic downfall
of poet writing only for poet? Yet who
else should I write for? If not for me?
I write my way through the confusion
that is the why of my existence,
and I am
the man in the street, the whatever;
the couch potato. The manic and
bedraggled loneliness feeding
stray cats; I am the poet, vicarious
starman climbing my own steep
stairway, mountain of words.
I am the tears that slide unmentioned
through the stubble on your cheek.
I am the mother unmade.
I write for the poet trapped elsewhere
unaware of the proximity of sky;
I am the poet;
the lingering harm.
The mother, the child.
I write from my own dark and growing
ever more uncertain about
the shattering light of day.
Yet do I not owe it to myself, the
enquiry, the possibility,
of change? The price, the privilege of days,
is it not movement? Like the universe,
am I not expanding ever outwards
childlike and yet, pleating in patterns,
folding in long familiar creases
the fabric of me has been pinned and cut
shaped and torn, patched and changed. Temptation
rises to dismiss the offering
of a parachute.
I am the poet, the one I feed,
I could still be, still fly,
do I not owe it to the privilege of days
I listened to the tree breathing.
I listened in the silence of high
white cloud lazing over turquoise
gleam; the firmament listened
as tree-breath settled awesome
round my warm and languid body.
I listened to the tree drinking,
drawing the fallen sky into its
gnarled limbs as my own knotted
and twisted with time. I listened
to the tree singing as my own song
filled and refilled the space
between me and eternity.
I don't have to see through the label
disabled, I can see a fine edited version
unblinkered by cultural expectations;
unfixed by the security of being one
of us. I am always another. Half this
or that opens a vast expanse of
possibility and closes deep and
segregating silence between me
and your comforting certainties.
Disabled is your label
disabled is your view of my world;
disabled by your lack of awareness
your disability to see outside the
parameters of your own locked-in
I am one with the breath of trees
settling molecules and atoms into the earth
as the firmament watches and my own song
fills and refills the space; the spaces
that open like a flower, a lover,
and close on my segregation;
on the passing of time
that joins me to tree-breath
settles me round about myself
inside and outside,
one and another.