Once Upon A time

At a favourite high altitude lake with one side wedged deep against a steep rock fault. A conceit poem about returning here after hearing of someone’s death earlier (1998), all encapsulated in real nature of perceptions contra haziness later, when memories. Pic: my own, is of the lake.



To be alone
I remember resting here, wondering
how could so many years have passed not
knowing, not feeling the impoverishment

Here, in self-exile, the scene hardly changes
Swells ripple over rock, birch leaves fall, grass
turns from green to gold; the boulder’s been
half-submerged, since, stone-age times

And you and me, far along curving platform
farthest possible from those slamming doors
trains departing too fast for eyes to focus
Illicit trysts! It would be way past teatime

before we dared take the Victoria express
to your mews flat in Chelsea; now linked, by
some arcane contiguity, to shameless dancing
at Le Macabre, to Temperance Seven jazz!

Soho was a hotspot for less innocent fun then
Funny how some thoughts flood in unbid. Perhaps
being from when you were most beautiful, and sinful
the lithe bohemian art teacher, yet undiscovered

that just those memories would be all I need
That, and this quality of enduring realness
merging ahead into impenetrable mist
soothing, alluding





© Gothicman 2023
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I was totally absorbed by the world before me, took me back to youthful days, and vague memories of The Temperance Seven.

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