Fiona Owen

 

Rant of the Buckled Feet
Free circulation of information is essential
to health and survival
Ė quoted by Joanna Macy

I
We can no longer
                        stand you.
We cannot bear
                        your importunate weight.
You are too top heavy
                                     high up there
in your pent-house suite.
You have made us
                                     unsteady.

The tower
                        sways
threatens to fall
and you your un-listening ears
donít notice at all.

You have lost our trust.

The system is close to collapse.



II
You are
                        filled
with your own
                        noise                  so full
of thoughts
                        in their grooves
mission control high up there
                        head
so full
             in the clouds.

And we,
             way down here weighed down
weighted down
                        are carrying
                        you
             weight-bearing
(not bearing
                        you)
not bearing
                        (no longer bearing)
today must bare
                        ourselves
to you
             as we are: bone-aching
pain getting through

our pain
                        yes
is yours.

It is true.

Where is the line
that separates us from you?



III
Why must we commit atrocity to be noticed?
Why must we enflame ourselves to be heard?
Why must we finally rise up against you Ė
and break ourselves?

Rage poisons the system Ė we fly against
your greed poisons the system. Fear
poisons the system. The system flounders
in fog - itís the old story of the king
in his court capital cock
drowning out the bodyís needs
with the machine tick-tock
of engine noise planes plans
propositions polemical
anything to keep silence at bay

and what the silence might say.



IV
So we fire
arrows.

Primitive weaponry
against your high technology
but still effective.

Still effective
as you can see.

They penetrate
your inner sanctum
burst through
your hard wall
of defence.



V
We are every ass
every worn weary broken tethered thing
every creature every part of the whole
over-ruled, over-looked, over-ridden
walked on tested on cast out
thing.



VI
The rune says:
that which is ignored
wreaks havoc -

the system
is close to collapse.



VII
You have not yet descended
to be among us

climbed down
the necessary steps
to realise yourself
as each subterranean cell
each crevice where life hangs dearly.

You and your elite institutions
cocoon against us
but all the fortresses in the world
are whimsy
                        all the affluent distractions
cannot save your skin

but your skin (precious skin)
can bring your face to face
                                                   its
                                                   self
as it is

unfathomable

irreducible

to facts -

 

After WCW
(and Peter Finch)

I have eaten
the first loganberry
from the garden.

I'm sorry.
It pulsed such a red
I couldnít resist.

But it was sour.
I spat it out.
So you didn't
miss much.

 

Positioning
Yeah is what we had and no we never knew
                                     Grandaddy

Here I am, on my blue chair,
at the table where the window
looks out across the garden,
to the lake and the sea beyond.

The magazine beside me
reports Arctic glaciers diluting
the Atlantic as they melt.

The gulf stream is changing.
Climate could flip and this scene
outside the window where the elder
is in first leaf and the crocuses litter the lawn

would all become white: the sand-dunes, white;
the rooftops of Bryn Owain, white; Rhosneigr, white;
the lake a frozen slab, white; the garden
where our young trees are, white; field, white;
all Wales, all Europe, all all white.

An age of ice to snap off our fingers and toes.

But I lift my eyes and there you are,
in your dadís old checked shirt
mowing the long over-wintered grass
red sunshine flecking your hair
and green, green everywhere.