on the road to nowhere
Here's a favourite Peter Scupham poem, which I've always loved ...
... as taken from within from the pictured 1990 volume - one I've owned from shortly after its initial publication:
Watching the Perseids; Remembering the Dead
The Perseids go riding softly down:
Hair-streak moths, brushing with faint wings
This audience of stars with sharp, young faces,
Staring our eyes out with such charming brilliance:
Life, set in its ways and constellations,
Which knows its magnitude, its name and status.
These, though, are whispered ones, looked for in August
Or when we trip on dead and dying birthdays,
Drinking a quiet toast at some green Christmas
To those, who, fallen from our space and height
No longer reach us with their smoky fingers
Or touch this sheet of water under no moon.
They are the comet's tail we all must pass through
Dreamed out into a trail of Jack O'Lanterns,
A shattered windscreen on the road to nowhere.
We stand in this late dark-room, watch the Master
Swing his light-pencil, tentative yet certain,
As if calligraphy could tease out meaning,
And, between a huge water, huger sky,
Glimmers of something on the jimp horizon,
There might be pictures, might be conversations.
We wait for last words, ease the rites of passage,
The cold night hung in chains around our questions,
Our black ark swinging lightly to its mooring.
Peter Scupham (1933 - )