...i had an idea for a cycle of poems i want to write (some already written), to be called, "the angels share". "The angels share" is the term given to the whisky lost to evaporation during the maturation process, when the whisky is still in the cask. But naturally it could serve as a metaphor for many things: your songs that never came up on the jukebox, the lacunae in Sapphic and Archilochine fragments, the ruins of Elgin Cathedral (leadlight wind, transparent walls / and vaulted sandstone air / evaporated / the angels share...), the kiss that broke too soon (the stolen kiss, the breast just brushed, barely cupped), a brilliant conversation that fizzed like a sparkling synaptic constellation, but was lost in its entirety in a heavy dipso fog (such are the meterological vicissitudes of liquor)... The past, (x), of each of us is what we have relinquished, gifted to the angels for safekeeping. We retain traces of it, like the sweet, peaty fumes of the vanished whisky, but its liquid substance is elsewhere, weighed on infinitely more subtle palates... not only all this, the merely past, is the angels share, but also everything ever on the exquisite brink of existing: transpresence (is this too easy, too glib a coinage?), that existence/state of consciousness that confuses itself between: is, nearly is, IS!, was, oh fuck, couldnt we just... An absence which is manifestly present: memory, ghosts, that exact point/instant (note the coterminous nature of space and time here) when the fruit or leaf is severed from the tree by the cells of the abscission layer (we: the / earth, the sky: / abscission layer). The exact point when the choice is made, the moment lost, the possible alternatives claimed as a tithe by six-winged seraphim...
...i left that historyless place, that city always half-disappeared, half-built, then erased in the orbital emptiness of motorways (the river stoned, had to smuggle itself under the main road). But wherever i was on the face of the globe that yawning mirror seemed to loom everywhere, especially in the daily blue under construction, jetstreams golden sonic girders... i always thought, "i could live here", but was never really anywhere, the transient ghost tourist...
...i was entranced by the snail trails on the steps of the mausoleum, glistening like seams of some rare, ectoplasmic mineral, strung like the score of some silvery, lilting, distracted music...
...late into the night, our bodies gently irradiated by coffee, the car mysteriously held to its course. The road seemed soft and receiving as the closing eyelid, like wax and gossamer and rubber... we drove to many lonely places together, remote coastal settlements, lakes in winter, so that we would understand one anothers ghosts. We stayed in many unfamiliar rooms and made them ours for a matter of hours, or days. We would drink wine and whisky, eat fish and chips or pizza in small towns, or pies and coke when we stopped to gas up in the gelid pools of fluorescence in sevice station forecourts. In cities we would eat out, eat well. We would dine. Back in the room we would watch television, even if we did not understand the language. Sometimes we would make love. We took many photos to keep a record of our searches....
(brief poignant interlude:
-i just want the love to flow between us...
-do you mind if i open the curtains?
...the city, of course, always has its own subdued thunder, borborygmus, something brewing in the night: freight, consignments, direction (taut like muscles seized by tetanus, rails and roads) some sinister purpose, or maybe just going home. But if youre already there, home, listening, the purpose, outside, elsewhere, is always sinister. The neighbours upstairs are fucking. No good will come of it....
here, by the way, are some the poems for the aforementioned, putative cycle:
(from an island)
let the purling fingertip
springs anoint, moisten
is blown over page prints shifting sands
wood sings in taut grain, asthmatic
in hazy garlands trees float
the creaking rigging
of roots strain
cliffs pages at full sail...
(pohutukawa flowers; auditory hallucination; traces of Hiroshima Peace Park, 1988)
undrunken the weight of pacific
blooms coax whirring machine
bees (transparent industry)
and geckos tongues
slender nibs dipped
in nectar glistening
invisible ink sets,
a feathery infinite alphabet
rose, a half-read breeze
swims in lines
seeing incandescent arcades
gold skeleton dome
crowns burst zero
there is crystal rubble
in your eyes, ears,
(the sharing of the cup)
lift upwards your spent air
april wilfully may
expunge sunny verdure from leaves
unveil autumns splendid mendicant tones
a splash of whisky, with fatal accuracy
strips pale taste and lustre
the tip of your tongue is my flickering home
the balanced absence of wind
in raw space
the twilight suffused with a deciduous
skeletons mellifluous blush
and the silken chill
that slips between clothes...
"....his childhood ambition to be a starship captain having been cruelly disappointed by the space programs woefully inadequate technological progress, cameron bain is now resigned to being a ghost..."