Edge in the Nature of Things


It’s not for me to know why or how
That in touching things –
This spoon on the work bench,
That box on the window-sill,
Whilst sifting dusty traffic sounds
From its lid –
I am taken back to a time…

A whittled-worn log, on a beach,
Its holes blown through with sand;
A picnic.
The ledge of bread and cheddar
Peppered with seaside dust,
The rising sounds of waves,
And the falling,
Nature at its bottom, most bare.

And meanwhile here I am,
In the confines of my room,
Pawing my things with a rag of duster,
A somebody wishing:
‘Somewhere Other Than Here.’

And somehow, suddenly, something is pouring;
Some time of the heart enters
This box (dust-to-dust) of mundanity
And connects it to a presence
Far, far greater: that shore’s lip,IMG_1795
My young hand in wrinkled house-wife paw
Of my, (now ashes) grandmother,
Salt smell rising from the water,
Lapping it’s skin around our ankles.

And now not only is this sill in my room
Finding its way to the edge of the world,
But I myself, in my rigidity of duty,
Am also being poured…
This task, the entry point
Into all
That lies, moves, pulses,
Beyond the window’s pane.

Written 3rd May 2015 at a poetry workshop in the Black Swan Arts Centre Frome, in response to an exhibition titled ‘Nest’ by Tom Bayliss

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