To reach those high towers…

High Towers

A shore like brown sugar,
that shade exactly,
that level of moisture,
loosely packed, which leaves
grains clumped on
my crossed thighs.

The small wolfish dog
lays his jaw on my knee,
stinking, he contemplates
the deep with opaque eyes.

I scribe my tablet,
jabbing the stylus,
watching the long
slow pull of the waves.

There was never any hope
of escape from this.

The sky has filtered
the jaundiced shade
of old bruises, the color
of air prequel to storms.

I taste the metallic
edge of lightning,
hold it like meat
between my teeth.

A sensible person
would not be here,
crouched among
the bones still lodged
within the dying flesh.

I should not be immune
to the gasping. Should have
more pity for the sand-
dollars twitching their cilia.
They might be fit for collecting;
small talents can be
so beautiful, dried.

I am too far from the shade,
the easy life, too far
from the sheltering palm-trees
to ever find safety. I want more
than a peaceful repose.

The water retreats.

But only so far.
Beyond a certain point
there can be no receding,
so far in the invitation
must be passed through, revoked.

My lap-bound
dog’s head yawns
its hide covered jaws,
ignoring the flies. I incise
my last sentence. Stop.

The whole ocean before me,
bound, rising up.
Some fearful controlled
Power, held the height
of a mountain,
running to me.

The walls are alive,
a telling continuum,
more so than its own
abandoned children,
laughing and glasslike.

Whales held vivid in aspic,
singing their grand eternal poetry.
A dolphin impaled on a main-mast,
the guardian spirit, setting
the course of the prow.

The small doesn’t matter,
finds itself left dry,
gasping in the face
of this implacable force.

The great may join.

The dead dog pulls itself
from knee to lap, finally sitting.
My guardian spirit,
settling the prow.

We are ready for jousting.


About Bethany W Pope

Bethany W Pope was named by the Huffington Post as ‘one of the five Expat poets to watch in 2016’. Nicholas Lezard, writing for The Guardian, described her latest collection as 'poetry as salvation'.....'This harrowing collection drawn from a youth spent in an orphanage delights in language as a place of private escape.' Bethany has won many literary awards and published several collections of poetry. Her first novel, Masque, was published by Seren in 2016. Her second novel, Ordinary Lives: The Ballad of John and Mary, was published in 2018. Follow her on Twitter @BethanyWPope

Posted on June 26, 2012, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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