Lasting Ripples

I photographed this leaf while on my ‘stroll’ yesterday that couldn’t count for exercise 🙂 I stopped at every leaf and flower like a bee…

Striations

Anything can trigger a poem, this one dominoed into Hell’s Gate Park in Kenya. Down below, a random photo I took inside, a few years earlier. It was strange, there was hardly anyone there that day, except the hot sun and a tiny array of grassland herbivores.

And the knowledge of the hedgerow plant, I found embedded in leaf veins ... like in mine, etched along blue lines of a notebook. In the ripples on the remnants of water that pooled, before the mudflats claimed them are the striations of  ol'butot near  Naivasha. His stories tell of caves, a gleaming obsidian of a pre historic introspection. Do forty day fasts suffice to exorcise the springs of sulphur or the forced baptism of a flash flood washing six souls to Hades ? The sun glinted at me through a narrowness of fate, a gorge of interminable seconds and I marvelled at the strata of time in a warp, for it blurted out a moan. Love spoke in nuanced layers of molten flow that crawled to stillness. Can I not say that stone speaks? A couple of hundred years back in time, self titled discoverers  had seen land that had not been unseen by the thousands who lived for thousands until then. So yes, the strata spoke to me, like the striations in the leaves and the lines that were everywhere telling stories of interminable seconds. Time grooves like a death valley in an engraving, etched like a memory of that which has never been, ripples on sand, circles on water, 
“A sparse region of natural beauty, Hell’s Gate runs west of the ancient lava flows of Mount Longonot, a 9,111-foot-high extinct volcano dominating Lake Naivasha and the Rift Valley. Combined with Longonot and Naivasha, the region forms a unique sanctuary for bird and animal life. It has been a longtime favorite of hikers, rock climbers, and nature lovers”… Read further here.

Bruise like raisins, cut like marzipan, yield like cake

Waking up to a wilderness of thought/ where golden raisins painted the years fleeting memories/ the soft citrine of sunlight that fades at wintry noon/ while feeling the garnet of buried hurts and regrets/ like cranberries seeking to be lost in the depths of sweet confections/ but it was the obsidian of a dark year that was counted in currants/ and the days numbered for words spoken, unspoken, friendships made, unmade// Egg whites were beaten and frothed as the wintry chill of life/ fine sugar sufficed for the cloying Spring of ephemeral intentions/ butter, heavy, greasy with misplaced expectations, curdled now/ imagining a different summer in a warm baked transcendence//

365 days worth of candied ginger and orange peel glittering on granite /waiting to be embedded in the soul of the season/ to be resigned to the slash of a knife in future sacrifice/ and in such a cut to reveal at core, precious many, those amber raisins, earthy walnuts/ like the Pleiades that escaped Poseidon/ where they, held in crumb, weep for time lost in the fold of a year// Medusa turned Algol, blinking in gorgon apricot, threatening to turn the confection tart/ for her righteous rage embeds now in molten batter/ and here, even Perseus cannot hurt her //

It is the spice of life, when cloves and cinnamon embalm you into sweet transformations/ to fold into the alchemy of flour/ to another year, to another time, to another place/ filled with friendships, intricate as a Gordian knot, not a tug of war seeking simple resolution/ breathing in a love that asks for the yielding of cake, not the armour of battle/secure in the sweetness of coalesced assemblage baked to perfection, not the self centred phalanx of soldiering ingredients//

Am I and are you, ready to submit to a new year, to cut like marzipan/ for the merging of our egos, like when brandy gets personal with cake/ for fresh outpourings of love and bartering of affections/ that aren’t silent but rooted in flavour, in sharing, in soul// Are we ready to reach out in thought or deed/ Or are we still looking for the world to hand us loose change in coin as lifeless as that silver platter //

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I baked a fresh batch of Christmas cake, having shared the previous ones I made. The baking process provided some insight into formulating my resolution for the new year: “to be yielding like cake.”

I believe life is not a battle to be won, in armour, but something to be yielded to, in gratitude while fluidly seeking, reaching, merging, creating, giving, coalescing into a collective flood. I know it is difficult, easier said than done and cake has a way of showing you the path ☺️

Real friendships I believe are personal and allow a space for vulnerability. To write poetry is an act of vulnerability too. To live life is an act of vulnerability unless one wants to hide under a rock in silence or battle life as a wilderness of thorny experiences in isolation. This year has become one of opportunity to embrace vulnerability.

I am amazed by the number of people in the poetic community who give voice to spirit and passion, whether for the singular or for the collective. This never ceases to inspire me.

Sending everyone the best of wishes for the new year and a lot of strength for sticking with your resolutions and your intentions.