Unfinished overture

Unfinished overture

It is the density of your desire
           that I find most appealing
your body is not just an adjunct
           but a warm receiving intensity
of flesh and bone that seeks
           to cradle my affections

yes there is a sense of calm purpose
           but allied with this is a passion
that knows no bounds
           that seeks to envelop me
with a thousand arms and legs
           all at once amid a blitz of kisses

John Lyons

Dull day

Dull day

At night
           the clear skies
endless space
           and a feeling
that all things
           are possible
countless stars
           urging us on
to better things
           to better dreams

It’s the grey skies
           that get me down
I feel hemmed in
           as though the wool
has been pulled
           over my eyes
once too often
           these dull grey
unimaginative skies
           a lethargic wind
a day within which
           the day appears
to drift aimlessly
           to a pointless
conconclusion
           I could say more
but I won’t
           not for now

John Lyons

Miracle

Miracle

Something
           greater than life
may move life on
           to something greater

imagine a rose
           in full bloom
out of season
           but adamant

that its beauty
           should rise up
through the final
           dark days

of December
           Imagine an absence
curtailed out of love
           imagine words

in their full flower
           meaning exactly
what they say
           imagine a kiss

that may raise
           the dead
from the dead
           love is that miracle

under this blue
           firmament
there is no other
           we need no other

John Lyons

Love all that matters

Love all that matters

Call it the necessity
           and the flower of life
though neither of those
           does it justice in the least

think of the moral qualities
           present in our consciousness
think of all the choices we make
           throughout our complex lives

and then consider the thread
           of simplicities that runs
through the very heart
           of all that matters

and know that that love
           is all that matters
that is all that matters
           that is all

John Lyons

The Tower

yeats
W B Yeats (1865-1939)

The Tower

The clouds of the sky
           torn to shreds
by the bitter wind
           grey clouds blowing in
from the East
           on this the shortest day
the longest night to come
            How well Yeats understood
the wreck of the body
           the slow decay of the blood
and for so many years
           knew only love unrequited
haughty disdainful love
           that near broke his heart
until he found satisfaction
           with one who cared
peace of body and mind
           at last and an harmonious life

Faith and pride
           he bequeaths to the young
and memories of love
           the poet’s sweet imaginings
he puts to one side :
           time indeed to make a living will
a testament to his humanity
           the lock stock and barrel
of his life and the learnings
           of his unbroken soul

John Lyons

Good morning

Good morning

There’s a sparrow on the wall
           singing its heart out
a tiny sparrow that sings
           all day long barely stopping
to feed or take a sip of water

it’s there every day
           the same sparrow
I can tell from its cheery voice
           to which I have become
quite accustomed

rain or shine the sparrow
           is always around
to brighten my day
           with its uplifting
little threnody

a tiny sparrow
            cited in scripture
as a paragon
           of insignificance
in the vast scheme
           of creation :
a vile slur

more passion in that tiny bird
           than many people I know
and you Lesbia my supposed lover
           so far away
send me a cool message
           just two dull words :
good morning

John Lyons

Ages

Ages

In all this poetry
           there is a yearning
for enduring love
           for an incorruptible body
for a commitment
           beyond word or gesture
for a depth of connection
           that transcends the physical

I too have seen the years
           the decades
that have simply unfolded
           for better or for worse
I have lived through
           fractured promises
and half-truths
           been taunted
by surface beauty
           and betrayed by numbers

as far as the eye could see
           orange groves
and flowering fields of sugarcane
           and a vicious dust
that settled in the lungs
           I have seen many things
and been blind to others
           have felt many things
and been insensitive to others
           but I ask you
what have you seen
           and known of the world
what have you known
           of life and love
what have you ever felt
           other than commotion ?

John Lyons

By Putney Bridge

By Putney Bridge

Down by Putney Bridge
           day slowly descending
into darkness
           river high
but not unduly
           temperature falling
but not that cold
           joggers back and forth
ducks and geese
           on the causeway
first lights of the evening
           watching the waters flow
thinking of you
           wishing you were here

John Lyons

Light

Light

Put out the light
           and put out the light
nothing metaphorical about it
           light is life
light of my life
           and lovelessness
a dark state
           flowers that spread
their petals by day
           that close down at dusk

Androsthenes
           friend of Alexander the Great
324 BC
           observed that the leaves
on the tamarind tree
           opened and closed
from day to night :
           the phytochromatic
properties of plants
           that alter to feed
on red or far red light
           the spectrum of love
that lies beneath the surface
           that moves all things

Love too is process
           warmth 
enlightenment that feeds into life
           nourishes the heart
summer goes winter goes
           love remains

John Lyons

Cosmic moon

Cosmic moon

In the still night
           a bright moon seen
from my window on the world
           full almost
but shrouded in mist
           and I think
what silence
           before the stars were born
what emptiness
           before the appearance of space
what an eternity
           before the first pulse of time
a lightless lovelessness
           beyond comprehension
without word or tongue
           or creed or earthly ambition
pure nothingness
           no birth
no exhumation
           no mortal lullabies of pain
no narrowing lust for gold
           no blissful palpitations
in the blood
           no dust unto a dust
to return
           no breathing grace
no thing
           no no

John Lyons