Monday, March 07, 2005

Ian Davidson: Too Long

the same circles

take a break eat
take the third roundabout
and feeling as if only or impossible
desire imagined medinas cool air off
the atlas the geography of a new country
the trip was taking me out of myself and then
what was left? inserting the endless
possibilities from casual to smart
casual and exhausted I blew
myself out

in the airport that is a city
names get mangled
ah david sõn
in the north terminal
names becoming mangled
in the place that becomes a city
through commerce
all points of the compass
I flew south
little left over

there are no maps of the medina
the people are many times restored
bodies carpets tattoos
reversible skin
inside out
live stock
boiled to dish rags
hand maiden

the way the connections of a real life never end unlike the
closed world of
a fiction expressed in a few hundred pages the price of
real life or the
cost of living
beyond belief

narratives close in
double knotted
making good siesta
the silence of the hooves
streets opening out into other streets many
ways to construct the medina
many ways to live a life and coexist
simultaneously outside of
the restrictions of stories we
tell ourselves or the histories
we carry around I'm talking
for you from whatever culture
or out of time for so many centuries
doorways within doorways up stairs
the recycled treads of the horses hooves

blue cobalt blue indigo blue incomplete
upper stories the silk yarns like
broken threads or a completed
building lacks a roof in certain
quarters the overspill in the mosque
canalised Idriss founder of Fez like a snagged
tooth of Welsh extraction stumbling
over the Arabic from holding it all in

what to make of it all
holding it all in
wave upon wave
digging into absorption
walking out on history
pretty mosaics and many of them
many pointed stars
doorways shaped like keyholes
multiple stomach disorders
symmetrical gardens disordered
minds and in winter sunshine
the crusade is to wipe Islam
off the face of the earth
until every smile is wiped off
every Arab face until
every corner of public space
is marked private and has a cost attached

he greets his friends warmly his
hand held between two hands he
touches his chest and takes away the
arm in a gesture of such gentleness
the bird bound hand and foot

Ian has a blog of his own (it was actually looking at his that led me to revive Pages in this format). His is dedicated to collaboration, and the last posting features the poem above. Click here. You can also see where I tried to collaborate with him but the technology decided to 'collaborate' as well.

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