Morning matters

Morning matters

The particles of matter
           that made me
what I am
           soft-voiced but no sparrow
I sing to myself each morning
           even in silence my mind sings
and it is the same song
           over and over

I ask myself
           Has all this sunlight
                      come to this ?

And how I am driven
           to search among words
for the right words
           and how I will know them
when I hear them
           when I see them
when I feel them
           when I live them

John Lyons

Enough for today

Enough for today

Some day some of my words
may be important
though not now
not for a good while
and not necessarily or ever

Today there are daffodils
and clouds and the threat
of rain and a return to winter
and after all the woollens
have been carefully tucked away

I hear the siren of the steamship
that plies its trade on the Thames
that ferries tourists back and forth
in their aimless lives passing under
the bridge of history
in the shadow of the Tower

and outside on the street
I hear animated conversation
words used as a web of intimacy
or simple good cheer
because there’s time and because
time somehow has to be passed

There are young children too
growing into the words
they will later use with such
precision to praise or to destroy
to build a life around
their affections and so defeat
the endemic darkness

John Lyons

New life

New life

You whose life is on hold
rise up from your self
shed all past pains
and grasp the day
with eager hands

See how the daffodils
have opened overnight
how effortless their nature
and such beauty
in the spread petals
formed from sunlight
they bring light into the life
you should be leading

I have seen bees toiling
endlessly to advance
the universal purpose
that all things should have
more life increasingly

You whose life is on hold
refuse to lie down
beyond yourself
joy and love await
in the life that fosters
new life

John Lyons

These days just a song

These days just a song

A bird is singing
           singing its heart out
perhaps because the rain
           has stopped and the sun
has emerged from the clouds
           a single melodic line
over and over again
           as though its life
depended on it
           or mine

John Lyons

Yesterday rewritten

Yesterday rewritten

Love how the light
           cascades through the leaves
of summer trees
           the chapter and verse
of spread branches
           once bare now thriving
with fresh life
            vivid greens set
against a blue sky backdrop

In time these leaves will fall
           to be gathered in piles
before fire or dust
           consumes them all
but for a while birds will nest
           and sweethearts
will lounge beneath their shade
           exchanging vows
of unending love 

Love how time filters
           through the leaves
how combed and caressed
           its pace is reduced
and all cares
           are brushed away

Love how the light
           and love coalesce
into moments of beautiful being
           in which time is stilled
with just a nod to eternity

I imagine the leaves
           as words strung out
for all the world
           to see and to admire
the dancing lilting leaves
           that sway
with the rhythms of life

John Lyons

Love how the light

Love how the light

Love how the light
           falls through the leaves
of summer trees
           the chapter and verse
of the spread branches
           once bare now thriving
with fresh life
           the vivid greens set
against the backdrop
           of blue sky

These leaves in time will fall
           to be gathered in piles
before fire or dust
           consumes them all
but for a while birds will nest
           and sweethearts
may stretch out
           beneath their shade
and plan for no end
           to their love

Love how time filters
           through the leaves
how combed and caressed
           its pace is reduced
as all cares
           are brushed away

Love how the light
           and love coalesce
into moments
           of beautiful being
in which transience halts
           with a nod to eternity
I imagine the leaves
           as words strung out
for all the world
           to see and to admire
the dancing lilting leaves that sway
           with the rhythms of life

John Lyons

Greetings from beyond the page

Greetings from beyond the page

Salute the rising rose
           red in its bed
for you chose
           above all else
love
           as your path
to happiness
           knowing that this
would set your breath
           against the wind
that your spirit
           would sometimes fail
and that your heart
           would be left
to find its way
           among the thorns

Salute the rising sun
           proud parent of us all
witness too to our trials
           and tribulations
Salute the stars
           that guide our path
at night or when
           we are lost at sea
The mystery of love
           is one we carry deep within
our full-blooded frames
           we in our oneness
constantly in pursuit
           of the perfect duplicate
but life’s duplicities
           lead us so easily astray

Salute the wisdom
           of the child’s kiss
of a mother’s or a father’s
           given in the innocence
of love’s nature
           We are to live
for no other purpose
           than love and on occasions
we must die for it
           without question

John Lyons

Daisy chains

Daisy chains

The smell of cut grass
           and recently turned earth
takes me back to my childhood
           back to warm summer days
and bright constellations
           white blossom on the hawthorn
and birds nesting in the hedges
           then all the simplicities of life
were laid before me
           in primary colours
in the wisdom of the moment
           I have travelled far and wide
over the years to escape
           a life lived from memory
and yet here I am home again
           within a mile of where I was born

So the seeds grow
           the trees know their shape
just as a bee can navigate
           the various hues around it
and I remain stubbornly
           stringing daisy chains of words
to hang around my neck
           marking my time

John Lyons

A declaration of independence

A declaration of independence

This then
           is the voice of me
the breath and the wherewithal
           of me
the much-travelled road
           the all seen and done of me
I place flowers in my poetry
           roses above all
and the beauty of her flesh
           that I sing because it is there
to be sung
           to be praised to the heavens
as all truth is
           I have my geography
I wear it under my chin
           I sleep with it at night
I ferry it from place to place
           I am an archipelago of selves
and yet dwell in my oneness
           if there is an energy greater
than the power of love
           please let me know
I would trim my hair
           and polish my shoes
in order to have the pleasure
           but I doubt
I doubt there is anything
           truer or more constant
than love
           no weather can destroy it
no years no times no place
           it is at the very heart
of my life
           it is what palpitates
what glows with its own
           quite special radiation
it is there for all to see
           shamelessly affirmative
it is what poetry
           was made for

John Lyons