Time’s petty pace

Heredia_partil view
Stained glass, (oil on canvas)

Time’s petty pace

Tomorrow and tomorrow
           etched in the mind
the word that appeared nightly
           above that building
on the corner
           of Mariahilferstrasse

Neon strips
           letter by letter
illuminating the word
           until complete
and so it remains
           for a minute or so
before vanishing
           into the dense darkness
of the Hapsburg capital
           only to repeat

At times
           thick white cloud
hangs from the horns
           of the moon

Tomorrow and tomorrow
           time creeps its petty pace
until first light of day
           and the deed is done

John Lyons

Advertisements

The shape of time

Art of Painting
The Art of Painting, Vermeer

The shape of time

 Pockets of time
         caught in art
trapped under pigment
         line and colour
from a different age :
         after the cave came canvas
but it’s the same process
         time dedicated
to capturing time
         a succession of moments
or of perceptions
         or of intuitions
or simply of actions
         but all shaped
thoughts feelings
         observations
and there’s
         a single narrative
running through it all
         this is what it is
to be human
         to be alive
or at least
         an aspect of it

John Lyons

Night invention

thorns
Thorns 2

Night invention

The darkness is ours
in which I hand to you
you hand me back
all the love

water spreads
through the earth
reaches into
the root of being

in the darkness
as mirrors rest
your secret voice
is revealed

through the blinds
a moon laced with cloud
on white linen
the thorns are removed

one by one
there is no blood
to stain

no tears to dry
your mouth

is an abyss
into which
I willingly fall
and sleep comes
gently

John Lyons

Eight thorny lines

thorns_2.jpg
Thorns

Eight thorny lines

How soon the petals fall
how soon dawn turns to dusk

how soon this life is over
and all things turn to dust

and memories are piecemeal
and time consumes them all

till love is all that’s left us
that love in which we trust

John Lyons

The chain of memory

mindscape_21
Mindscape (oil on canvas)

The chain of memory

The chain of memory
           one step after another
from daybreak to dusk
           in the cold
or the sweltering heat
           the past barely behind us
we immersed
           in its consequences
but constantly edging
           forward to cover
or so we hope
           new ground
to free ourselves
           from all that would
tie us down
           or hold us back

Love tells us that
           there are no repetitions
that each moment
           is sacred
each kiss or caress
           devotional
and that tenderness
           is sometimes a gift
of parentage
           We live the fact
of our existence
           yet pass our lives
in search of the true
           innocent inner self
a cosmos unto ourselves
           with our own laws
and trusted properties
           and it takes quite a mind
quite a heart
           to grasp it
in its totality
           we who dwell
in the known country
           struggle with a muddle
of necessary imperfections
           of missed goals
and opportunities
           of failures and remorse
taking comfort only
           from the pity of love
from the hand and lip
           of another much like us
a brother or a sister
           a poetic companion
sharing in our humanity
           moved by the same rose
soothed by the same birdsong
           driven by the same desires

John Lyons

Distant divisions

storm_1
A perfect storm, John Lyons (oil on canvas)

 

Distant divisions

In all modesty
it’s about the words
the words that you lay down
day in day out in verse
the poetry that comes
with your breathing
or from your breath
the particulars of life
that you choose to salute
those events and those feelings
that remain when all else
has been subtracted
what is of importance

As the master said
learn your distances
know your intimacies
confuse neither

the rose you dared to pick
the love you dared to live
the intensity of it all
the here and now of it
that construct of space
within time that you dared
to create for there is risk
in all things that animate
and chance would be
a fine thing if it existed
the question is
do you lead a life
or are you led by it
who is running the show
who decides whether
you live or you die
in truth to yourself

John Lyons