Ambedo The life of the dead is placed in the memory of the living. – Cicero The challenge: to start not at the bottom of the abyss but at the beginning 1. Raindrops careering down the window during class, drawing you in, drawing you back, further back than you care to remember
[We do not know the way out or the way into it]2. Condensation triggering droplets of water on the inside as the rain outside teems off the faces of leaves, pools in puddles between broken paving [We do not know the way out or the way into it]3. Rainwater driven by the fury of wind coiling and sparkling in the sun, frothing like torment behind the huts [We do not know the way out or the way into it]4. The afternoon bell muffled by the sound of rain flooding the playground and rose beds beyond the chemistry lab window and the retention of pain [We do not know the way out or the way into it]* More than once we have been lost in this same downpour, lost in the vaporization of water into gas, lost in the chalking of lines upon the black school blazer, lost in the torn pockets and ritual spitting The child has entered into this abyss, this punishment Memory being both hellfire and holy water You have your own story [We do not know the way out or the way into it]
Bardsey and Beyond I am alone on the surface of a turning planet. – R.S Thomas When sun and moon align and the spring tides peak you might recall our walk along the cliff tops and the reassurances you gave against falling as you cast your net of light over both land and sea Sorry to think how the tide has turned on sentiment Strange how refuge turns so suddenly into chaos No boat to ferry us to the island of saints and pilgrims No last crusade to cement the bonds between us High time to say goodbye to the bogus world of bodies Nothing left of sweetness beyond the heart’s stubborn failure
Mark A. Murphy is a queer, penniless poet, living with schizoaffective disorder, comorbid depression, GAD, complex PTSD, and OCD. His next full-length collection, The Ontological Constant is due out this summer (2020) in a bi-lingual German/English edition from Moloko Print in Germany.