Dream fresh dreams

Dream fresh dreams

Dream fresh dreams
            of a love that will go
to infinite pains
            to requite
and be requited
            a love not
of the imagination
            a love free
of madness
            full of harmony
and delight
            a pure joy

All things
            may pass away
but not love
            not if it’s true
It is what fills
            time and space
with meaning
            hence
my significant
            other
Take nothing
            for granted
take no one
            ever

John Lyons

 

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Taking stock

Taking stock

What is different
           what remains the same
the pattern of days
           of habits broken
when another enters
           your life
turns it all upside down
           not that you protest
you always felt
           that you could do
with a change
           novelty to replace
recurrence
           rewarding activity
instead of a dreary
           restlessness

That’s life
           a mixture of pleasures
and of pains
           and of the trouble taken
to love one another
           for better or for worse

History is over our heads
           decisions decisions
devoid of intimacy
           we are lucky
to have each other
           Long may it last
I think to myself
           in the silence
of my mind
           my heart at peace

John Lyons

A time of reckoning

A time of reckoning

A poet is never idle
           never tires of being
of shaping words
           in search of an order
of understanding
           the beauty of all mystery

To read the world
           is a welcome task
to add to the sum of song
           to notice and to commend
the shy snowdrops
           soon to appear
where the green grass
           is sheltered and where
squirrels and crows
           roam freely
and crocuses and fresh
           winter blossom

Now I say
           at valentine’s approach
the worst is behind us
           the days are longer
and spring will soon
           have its revenge
In the heavens
           the stars are aligned
not long now
           until love has its way

John Lyons

Gustav Klimt – The Kiss

 

 

klimt-der-kuss-1908
The Kiss, Gustav Klimt (1908)

Gustav Klimt – The Kiss

You might think
           something of value
would be retained
           that the special character
of a relationship
           would be worth
preserving
           that certain times
and certain spaces
           would be reserved
for what was after all
           a love of sorts
a love that lent
           a lasting form
to our lives
           or so I thought

In my mind
           Klimt’s Kiss
in the Belvedere
           still shimmers
oils with added
           gold and silver leaf
in my mind
           and in my heart

John Lyons

 

Philippe Soupault, two poems

Philippe Soupault, two poems

 

Georgia

I can’t sleep Georgia
I shoot arrows in the night Georgia
I’m waiting for Georgia
I think Georgia
Fire is like snow Georgia
The night is my neighbour Georgia
I hear every sound without exception Georgia
I see the smoke rising and seeping away Georgia
I creep along in the shadows Georgia
I run here’s the street the suburbs Georgia
Here’s a city that’s the same
and that’s new to me Georgia
I rush along here comes the wind Georgia
and the cold silence and fear Georgia
I’m leaving Georgia
I’m running away Georgia
the clouds are low they’ll tumble down Georgia
I’m opening my arms Georgia
I can’t close my eyes Georgia
I call Georgia
I shout Georgia
I call Georgia
I call out to you Georgia
Will you come Georgia
soon Georgia
Georgia Georgia Georgia
Georgia
I can’t sleep Georgia
I’m waiting for you
Georgia

 

Epitaph for Francis Picabia

Why
did you want us to bury you with your four dogs
a newspaper
and your hat
You asked us to write on your grave
Have a nice trip
They’re going to take you for a fool up there too

Translations by John Lyons


Philippe Soupault (1897-1990) was a French writer and poet, novelist, critic, and political activist. Active in Dadaism, he later founded the Surrealist movement with André Breton. He was also the translator of William Blake’s Songs of Innocence and Experience into French.

Digression on love

Digression on love

The memories
I am bound
to dismantle
of times too good
to be true

of scallops
from Borough Market
in the fluted shells
that the pilgrims wore

Memories of walls
and rivers and boats
and cathedrals
and many a meal
so joyfully shared

At what fence
our love faltered
I’ll never know
like so much
I suppose

I’ll never know

John Lyons

Revised from earlier today