THE THIRD DAY

GREAT PLAINS II

Seal me, heal me
Count what you found to repel time’s acidic ministry

Someone read me, lead me
Bound to the hour when the hourglass bowed down to gravity

Someone seal me, heal me
I’m only one wire in your machine
Count what you found to repel time’s acidic ministry

Someone read me, lead me
I’m only one wire in your machine
Count what you found to repel time’s acidic fear

ELSEWHERE

Well experienced and qualified in
Few if any pure rebellions

Time will tidy up the glaring errors, all
Charm and loyalty, a beaming villain

So set this thing aright or set it alight
All discussion come to nothing

A sound from elsewhere
Wakes you up
Though you weren’t sleeping

After the pains you took to build on the fault line
They say you’re nothing but the glare in others’ minds
After the trouble taken to be reassigned
They say you’re nothing but the glare in others’ minds

AUGUST

Did the stolen crop that you added onto your own excess provide a discrete regret, like a childhood pet, where your sympathies could lie?

Whether you die today or choose to stay, to those outside it’s only light

A NICE LITTLE PLACE

The next time you see me,
I will be someone else
I will hold his head high
And you will say to yourself

“Though he reminds me of a broken sundial,
A new artillery’s in the eyes”

Pick up where we left off
By starting from scratch
Confirm my intentions
In the book of the past

Everyone is friendly in the town of amends
At the carnival’s end
Then the wind whipped the sand
At your beautiful face
So I bought us a nice little place

DO SOMETHING USEFUL

Don’t stop to ask advice
Just plough ahead
Consent to pay the price
What’s done, not said

One day you will look back
On this story and feel
No lack

WIRES

I’m the window that won’t open
I’m the noise you can’t quite place
The dumb tune you can’t forget
The right words you can’t remember

I’m the poison in your diet
Makes you burn when you should freeze
I’m the familiar disease
You’re the stranger on the platform
Hold the door for one more fare

I’m the milky light you fear at
The third point of no return
I’m the patient and the quack
You’re the suit behind the mirror

When the chosen are reposing
At a time without a name
You compose a useless verse
And tear it up to feed the fire
Then you will see my wires
Presently you’ll see my wires
In time you’ll see my wires
Finally you’ll see my wires

It’s a trick
A deceit
If you’re not fooled now
Then I swear you will be

PINES OF EDEN

So you’ve taken stock
And found grace lacking
In questions and in clocks

Planning your escape
The rest is easy
Once you’ve crossed the gate

Arrows mark the way
What more can I say
Forces will relent
But when?

Back up on your feet
Going elsewhere
While the travel’s cheap

All fall down
The game’s no fun now
That we’re on the last round

Evergreen and tart
The pines of Eden
Back to where you start

Arrows mark the way
What more can I say
Forces will decline
Down the years the flaws have crept
To fight if not to play
Name what will survive
But why?

DUST

Now the dust descends on the season past
We survey the broken glass
From an expert’s height they seem so small
The constellations that tore our skin
The traps that we set and then stepped in

I hold a shard to your eye and bid you peer
At the kaleidoscope of years
A ravelling symmetry in the antic loss
A party in search of the great because
The child of what could be and what was

I’m exhausted from staring in the shop window
Burning for the things I would rather not know
You told me so

The supply ‘plane leaves for the last time till Spring
And we curse what we did not bring
Do we trust the map that swears this is the place
Unrecognisable at first
Parts look better, parts look worse

As the dust descends on the Same New World
We survey the damage earned
From an expert’s height they seem so small
The constellations that tore our skin
The traps that we set and then jumped in

I’m exhausted from staring in the shop window
Itching for the things I would rather not know
You told me so

I will remember (untrue)
There’s no surrender (to whom?)
It’s never-ending (the spin)
The dust descending (within)

WHEN TO STOP

Though it seems we could last forever
I’ll know when to stop
On the third day the tube was severed
We’d drunk every drop

Though you tell me I’m twice mistaken
I’ll know when to stop
When the picture that we were faking
Turns into a song