On the road

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photo at pixabay

How now brown cow newly
before me on the brow of
the hill

For a moment your great
sandy head was that of a
watchful lioness and awed
at forty-five miles an hour
I was suddenly driving red
dust tracks in Africa

Until snapped back to the
morning’s reality on the road
to Mungrisdale

Aye. Red dust gave way
to grey tarmac. Cumberland
bloomed. This was not tundra

For a moment my own great
sandy head is mildly
embarrassed by the watchful
vividness of my colourful
imagination and I concentrate
brake, slow, park, going

And then I find myself again
in a wondrous seat of art and heart
shared creativity and growing

Marvellous. Graced. Extra-ordinary –
a pride of lions and lionesses in a
little village hall. We write 
meditate, laugh, cry, articulate
enumerate – watchful eyes and ears
on the brow of many a glorious hill

and – exactly where we’re
meant to be – thee and me
quiet and still

Simon Marsh

At the church door

 

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photo at pixabay

(where no one draws breath, and you’ll have heard it all before)

Guess what Norah? there’s going to be
meringue! – ‘a nest of strawberries and
blueberries, raspberries, and rhubarb
coulis.’ Aw thump! Grandpa’s ratted and
Mam’s anxious and Granny’s weather-worn.
God, it’s hot isn’t it? Our Paula’s
nice fascinator’s wilting. Not my
choice of flowers! Who is going to
sweep up all that confetti? Verger
prefers white rice for a white wedding
‘e says. Confetti’s as daft as top
hat and tails when us lot are out in
us t-shirts and jeans, normal. Like them
bridesmaids on the hen night full of beans
and planning a dead rude speech to make
all them others screech. And now the Best
Man’s sweating. He’ll faint in a mo’ what’s
the betting? But his partner’s brought him
posh mineral water and the guy
with the camera says ‘stand in t’ shade’
which won’t make for good photos here or
at the Reception. Got any coins
for the collection? No, love. I’m broke
Hope it’ll be the old vows. We was
at the Methodist’s last weekend and
their vicar can’t half shift the trifle
Aaaaah ha ha! You know, like, worra mean?
You mean ‘obey’ and all that in them
old vows? Well, you know what? You can get
stuffed! Ey up, ‘ere come the eyelashes

Simon Marsh

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In the arc of the bay

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I tried to paint it
pale particularity
hues colouring faith

I did try to paint it but have
failed to do justice to the pale
particularity of this
panorama’s hue

sunlit mist disperses – yet the
colours remain only just brown
or blue or green – restful upon
the eye and for the

wondering soul too – arrow head
of wild geese honk in-flight above
me while swallows dart low above
protein-laden

mud-flats and the curlews’ cry and
sitting on millennia-old
rock by and by Wisdom’s care and
love attracts my soul’s

eye – pale hues deepen, colouring
rich and bright and in the silence
save for light breeze and birdsong
cheer – looking on Nature’s

beautiful architecture in
the arc of the bay, Wisdom shows
me love’s hope and meditation’s
delight and so faith

is here

Simon Marsh

Reflection and histories

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photo at pixabay

We who are water know
familial communion with
pond and river
lake and ocean
and we abide and communicate
by way of ripple and reflection
warmed by amniotic held
flotation – raised from
which our primal gasp and
cry signalled alpha and omega
of incarnate gradation – and
sight of mothered Wisdom
and taste of liquid nutrition
alongside growth spurt’s
sensation

Yes: our infancy born from
someone else’s depths never
leaves us – we are forever
embraced by it and so return
to reflection and histories
and promise as though to the
breast – and in gazing into
layered depths see at the
same time the light of height
yes: we who are water know
familial communion with
pond and river
lake and ocean
and we abide through all
eternity

Simon Marsh

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Then and now and will be

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And on the hillside
where we stood
elevated
the something that passed
between us
as though it were a
tidal current was already
as old and as new as the
Ancient of Days – in the
retrospect and in the
there and then and now
and in the prospect of
all eternity

That light, that current –
illumination and anticipation
launched a something that
is the everything
Immortal –
Yes, something to be
heard
like a song among the stars,
laughing and crying
held safe and aloft and
flying –
on that hillside
held and holding

Surprised
you and I encountered a
Divine Love and knew it to be
an Undying
in us, primarily
in those graced moments
but also in whomsoever –
and all are ultimately
capable of simply
letting go, and smiling and
then the final thankful sighing –
oh, little one, yes, you
great one

Elevated, celebrated: I love you

Simon Marsh – for JMT, 1960-2018, on the eve of her birthday

Sun chased

sunchased

When I drove west, gladly
anticipating another
invigorating morning’s
contemplating, dreaming,
listening, and writing,
the sun chased a cloud
across the face of
gargantuan Blencathra –
quietly present and glorious

And it dawned on me that
that life-giving source
and chase would do precisely
the same in a little
community gathered around
creativity’s table,
equally gargantuan –
quietly present and glorious

Simon Marsh