WITNESSES
 
sorry is a word crows don't understand,
they cluster like glinting cowboys by the roadside,
waiting for a bloody resolution.
 
but there will be no fight, no match,
no ring of laughing geese huddled together,
hungry for the sparring, the violent words.
 
you will talk of snowdrops and i will quietly pack a box.
 
goodbye means nothing to the solitary magpie
but he knows of winter,
the slow flight home under an empty sky.
 




AND YOU ARE THE EARTH

i am standing on your shoulder
and you are the earth,
full with dark pictures, with low sounds.
 
you are the whole earth with
its dark pictures, low sounds,
creatures with feet and arms
that move in shadow and
turn the spokes of your heart.
 
i am standing on your shoulder
and stories rise up through the
soles of my feet, the warm arc of my spine.
 
you are the earth, sending
dark pictures and low sounds
up through the arc of my spine,
your untouched moments that
prick the spokes of my heart.
 
i am standing on your shoulder
and you are the earth, the whole earth.
 




BROKEN

the fractured sky doesn't make promises
to the earth,
- nor I to you -
to stay separate, to hold
moments like primrose stars at arm's length
 
the tempered sky makes judgements
based on rhythms, angles and measures
 
but the fractured sky can't always protect
the sun
from darkness -
nor you me - left floating like
the broken head of a flower in a blue water-bowl.
 




MY LEFT ARM
 
you have stolen my left arm
and taken it to a distant town
where it turns your daughter
in the trembling air and holds
you small in the quiet hours,
when you are still breathing
and i am still breathing, waiting
for the brazen sky to fold.
 
and now you bring a broad
new arm to the hole of the city
where it hangs to my knees
but then burst through the
sleeves of the small hours,
when you are still breathing
and i am still breathing; there
is still no thunder to speak of.
 




PART OF THE ACCIDENT
 
there is nothing in my mind
that returns to the scene with pleasure,
to hear you laugh and so easily hand me the keys
to the next chapter, without witness.
 
i am not part of the accident
 
there is nothing in my hands
that would place them round the wheel
on an icy night, where your white-arrow words
fly blindly towards the hollow screen.
 
i am not part of this accident
 
there is nothing in my feet
that would choose to stand and watch
fingers of smoke rise from metal, limbs turned,
love spread darkly out on the road.


         Amy Stanbrook 2006