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Poetry
  Carol Watts
Carol Watts lives in London. Her work includes Wrack (Reality Street Editions, 2007), brass, running (Equipage, 2006), and alphabetise, a book of prose chronicles exhibited in the Text Festival at the Museum of Art, Bury, Manchester in 2005, now an eBook (Intercapillary Editions). She teaches at Birkbeck, University of London, where she co-directs the Centre for Poetics. Occasionals, a sequence of 68 poems written from Sept 2006-Sept 2007, is due out with Equipage/Cartalia this year.

 


 

From Occasionals: autumncuts

XV

The absence of harm is not the place to begin.
In the mildness of. Seasons, insufficient leaf
fall, they hang on. By the last thread, needing.
Definition, the gasp of frost. To let go. I know
what it is and then I do not, this game. Quietens
us down. If you break it open why, is there only
this silence, cracked open, the salt of other.
Pain, is not mine to own. It does not have a
cavity, for light. Or breath, but it serves, pain
persisting. To find a relation. Will you cut out
eyes and mouth, place it. At the window, lamp
for an evening. When they come asking, or
punishing. Replace the roof, it begins to burn.
That is for tomorrow. Now the purl of sky engine,
the point when it turns, sound dropping. Will
descent remain after it has gone, do we. Know
the reliance of gravity as a reluctant measure.
When it leaves us, only. Aggregations, do not
think of it as a lightness. Stacks of crimson,
the gnarl of globes, residues. Of distant earth,
chambers of flesh and light. The nature of over
wintering, buoyed up, hardened to its lasting, is.
Convincing, it does not ask to be. A mode of
attention. The thickness, is a red hide. Density
reassures, the beat of. Knuckles checking
ripeness, you know. He said, the rest are all
sold, and these the last. Red, green veins, will
open at the ceremonial, the knife. Sticks.

31 October 06





XVI

Something of an evacuation of light. Persists,
it knows the ending of day. Approaches, it turns
towards heat as love might. Deep in the earth,
rotting gently, sweat. Of leaves, skinís sudden
exposure. Plane trees, in intentional mottling
effect, sun spots. Ruching, experience. Not
ruins, or rubble, but run. Through, as if will carries
you, burning. Off what you jettison, what springs
in your wake, it is heaviness. Dragging out bones,
the bow of waking minutes, concentrations. Let
go, with leaf fall, and small flakiness, bark. Rills
of stiff. Lace. An hour passes, more. Modulation,
without birds, the clear reach. Where horizon is
imagined. Trees cascade, rust hoards, are coin.
Showers, each picked out by shadows. Each,
tearing holes, round. Puncturing air, she chases
her grandmotherís long line, it disappears into.
A cold lack of light, temporary. Respite from glare
of an old sun. She does not need to move much.
She says, take advantage of the day, in a patchwork
coat. It is not a how but a why, he points. Out,
a sense of injustice. It is the way woodsmoke brings
life forward, strong as leather, the way yesterday
always joins. With. Scenting tomorrow, its yellow
haunting. A glow, not without. Loss, anticipated,
as an inhabiting of flesh, a brilliance kept secret.
Known everywhere, in its hiding, he says. Even
describing this tree, is imagination, I have a right.





XVII

Is it so much later. Word from a shouting river.
Arrives, it is the interim. Before an Atlantic
storm, with hours of quiet rising. Weakness,
in light, lays down to rest. The falling out
of purpose. Opportunity to see a sequence, in.
Time, in one, the action starts out like a hunt.
Cut a story short. There he arrives, in the fourth,
and the game is bagged up. Yet, she said, this.
Could never be known, unless you saw them
together. The man who jumped from a tower
and flew a furlong. Wanted movement forward,
it was said. He could have improved on that
performance, if a tail had occurred to him.
But was prevented and lived, ripely. An impelling.
Towards, the risk of arrival. When sky darkens,
in notches, but it is too soon. Birds fall out,
expecting shattering, hold breath. And regroup
soundlessly, the fatigue of alarm silences.
Can we calculate the rising of water, he asks,
in inches. Using measurements handed in, always
the turn of the archaic. As if seriousness comes
that way. Looking at his feet, they already push.
Through the flow, the child stamps. He wrote,
the illusion of facing it well. Is our inhabiting,
handed on. In an impulse for protection, perhaps,
or the other side. Of a rationing, as if the chance
for anticipation remains. Possible light, drifts.
A cat. Descends in three, wall, ledge, sill. Cries.

24 November 06







© Carol Watts 2008