Swimming by numbers

 Posted by at 11:27 am  Anti-Gravity Surgery  Comments Off
Mar 132017

At the edge of bitterness, il gusto, mia lingua, il caffè macchiato

and I see the words, pietro colorato

I might drown in italiano.

This is swimming by numbers

and numeracy leaks away suggesting there is

a problem higher up, above the water line

pietro colorato

the colours are smudged by rising damp

meaning serious discolouration.

Why don’t I do something before the problems

threaten to overwhelm rather than this floundering around

with clumsy and wild strokes in approximation

of the swimming I learned when I was eleven

(is that right?)

Richard always needed me to go along with him

his parents paying for the lessons because they were better off

than my family. Not only did I learn to swim but I had already learned

to swim without money -

what was it I felt or what sense did I make of the absence

of family holidays, the lack of money?

i simply shut out the  possibility of the question:

desires strictly limited.

And then in the middle of my working life, after a few short years

of feeling better off, I was back to my default position.

The default position of the world:

most of us have little money!

i don’t imagine there will be any desert island discs

merely the wash of the waves and knowing that

I can be washed away by the first storm, the rising waters.

If the shoe fits … wear it

it wasn’t so long since life was incredibly hard (for most of us)

demanding, unsafe. For us in Europe, North America etc there was

a brief interregnum. Weakened by the costs of World Wars

the elite gave in and allowed certain elements of social democracy

but it wasn’t long before some tough minded warriors took to the warpath

and made out the case (there is no alternative) for the return to normality.

Truth lay exposed to the casual gaze of passers-by

but the passers-by had little time for such things.

It looked complicated, the surface scarred

by self interest, by the impact of lies and corruption

“I haven’t got time for that stuff”

Beneath, hidden from view were nuggets of possibilities

beauty patiently waiting, never ending joy …

I scratch around like a chicken

(what does a chicken feel as it scratches around in the dirt

with its beak, its sharp little eyes?)

I scratch around prodding at the words

willing them to divulge their possible and multiple meanings

to lift the lid, to uncover …