Trick or treat

Trick or treat

Trick or treat
           beauty or truth
body and soul
           so the voice goes
a magpie perched
           on the branch
of an apple tree
           pecks at the fruit
and the branch rocks
           and the wind rises
through this suburban
           universe

Light captured
           in autumn colours
a flurry of rusty leaves
           falling through
the wintry air
           a love so deep
so satisfying
           a love to die for
a love that makes
           life worth living
The magpie picks
           at the sour fruit
will never know
           of the joy that runs
through my heart
           trick or treat

John Lyons

A little light on love

network
Atomic flesh, John Lyons (40 x 40 cm, oil on canvas)

A little light on love

Physics tells us so much
           about our bodies
that they are formed
           from restless energies
that movement
           is fundamental
to every aspect
           of the universe
that our souls
           were forged
in the very origins
           of time

that expansion
           versus contraction
is the developmental
           paradox of the whole
of creation
           down to the pulsating
chambers of our hearts
           and that gravity
is an expression of love
           drawing one person
irresistibly
           close to another

John Lyons

 

Particles of being

Particles of being

When was it
              Wallace asks
that the particles became
              the whole man ?

Whose hand shaped the clay
              into what became
the Grecian urn ?
               Clay working upon clay
Whose hand hardened it
              in the fire
so that it would be there
              for all time ?

A breathing human passion 
               The energy to create
and so direct those energies
              to a precise purpose
earth to earthenware
              clay to Keats
poet to poetry
              truth to beauty

John Lyons

 

 

John Lyons

 

Birthday in Rushden

Birthday in Rushden

Where you took
           your first breath
and all that has
           happened since
the laughter
           and the tears

those you have
           known and loved
your eyes alert
           to the slightest
act of tenderness
           Where your limbs
first stirred
           and where
from time to time
           your thoughts return

On each occasion
           you feel the same
you feel different
           knowing that you too
in spirit and in the flesh
           are deeply loved

John Lyons

 

A mind of winter

A mind of winter

Today I have
           a mind of winter
a heavy frost overnight
           has coated the cars
with freezing ice
           and the glazed paths
are treacherous
           underfoot
as I make my way
           down to the station

now is no time to slip
           and break a bone
in the darkness
           A mind of winter
in which all things
           fall back to the earth
trees stripped bare
           to reveal hidden nests
a world it would seem
           in disarray
in which things end
           the only warmth
to be found
           in the arms
of the one I love
           the one I love

John Lyons

 

Early in November

Early in November

Early in November
           the lane opens
into a broad grassy
           upland field
of over twenty acres
           slightly sloping
to the south

Here I’m accustomed to walk
           for sky views and effects
either morning or sundown
           Today from this field
my soul is calmed and expanded
           beyond description
the whole forenoon
           by the clear blue
arching over all
           cloudless
only sky and daylight

The autumn leaves
           the cool dry air
the faint aroma
           crows cawing
in the distance
           two great buzzards
wheeling gracefully
           and slowly far up there
the occasional murmur
           of the wind
through the trees
           sometimes quite gentle
sometimes threatening
           a gang of farm-laborers
loading cornstalks
           in a field in sight
and the patient horses
           waiting

Walt Whitman


(adapted by John Lyons from November Boughs, 1888)

Art everlasting

flowers on blue
Flowers on blue background

Art everlasting

These frail flowers
           a figment
of the imagination
           nothing real
or accurate
           or even precise
or well-executed
           mere pigment
on a wooden base
           but not a single rose
or peony or petunia
           or daffodil
will outlive this
           notional posy

John Lyons