We arrived in our thousands,
laden; waterproofed and prepared
for the squelching, umber trudge.
We stalked, staked claim to the land
and built our temporary shelters;
effective but impossible to find
in the torch-lit, twilight damp. Loosened
by like-minded company, eventide found us
beneath the endless Suffolk skyscape,
throwing shapes as though invisible;
a cagoule-cassocked choir offering
hedonistic hymns in exchange
for a brief respite from the rain.
As we left, small pieces of us clung
to the bosky oasis; twirling bootprints
in the clotted clay, descant notes
perched as dew on forest leaves
and sighs that skittered
on the illuminated lake. Yet,
as the light slipped towards
the end of the earth, I realised
that each of us was leaving
with so much more than we
had packed in our rucksacks.
La Traviata by Rafal Olbinski
fingernails torn raw.
Hollow hungered malady
peeling lost harmonies.
glissandos tenor pitch,
fingering the rise and fall
of aching arpeggios,
blistering the limits
of a supple libretto tongue.
from the grace note.
Soft metronomic muscle caught
on snag-toothed grin of gristled moon,
faint wishbone whistle, picayune,
long-stemmed laments from thorns are wrought.
Wet roses wilt amid the silt
of sodden land that sorrow bought.
As footings rot on runes rough-hewn,
soft metronomic muscle caught.
He watches her from the wings, house lights down;
hush, not a sound. It starts; quietly, slowly, gently,
her eyes closed, her breath even.
She sways, slightly; the soft rhythm meandering
through her slender frame. Slim, nimble fingers
slideglideguide his gaze to the heart of the vibrato.
Pulling his eyes back to her own, she holds him.
Holds him. Holds him. Finding perfect resonance,
her head thrown back – building building building;
the crescendo climbing, existing, resisting.
Trembling tremolo trill, momentary dalliance with adagio.
soft still silence
accelerando accelerando accelerando