Not really a circular journey because that presupposes that the person who comes back is the person who set out all those days, months or years before. But we are confined to our spherical prison under the stars and under the sun. Renzo Piano’s Shard points the way out. The straight line must be the stuff of imagination. It informs, lends a narrow beam of light to our lives. Enables us to pretend that we have pushed God off ‘his’ throne and replaced him with . . . what? Science, psychoanalysis, all sorts of possibilities come to mind. And we really can tell stories . . . well, some of us can and some of us are rubbish at it.
The Flags Are Out
The flags are out – no I don’t why either . . .
but we may have to bend ourselves to the collective will.
The deer came out of nowhere; no, that’s not quite true
it obviously came out of somewhere.
It emerged in a rush from the hedge on my right
startled by my appearance before her, two or three metres
from her, she swerved and plunged into the opposite hedge.
A brief encounter with the wild – a second from
a collision that I imagine would have left me
sprawling in the road because she was all force.
A force intent on evasion and survival
making a life on the margins of the human dominated landscape.
Bright eyed maenad alive with perfection; one being intensity
tearing me limb from limb; flesh organs bones into
the mincer. The fat red-faced cook turning the handle
with gusto, eyes libidinously merry,
dreaming of such a dish to set before the king;
Spices and fruit bursting with juices
bursting on the jaded palates of a thousand diners.
Come overwhelm me, my darling –
this is something special: to be remade
to enter the hunt, to outwit time
to twist and shout exulting the joy, to fall
to touch the cathartic as an equal; to die as she dies
because each day I must enter her once more
in order to find what I must be.
(Alan Kirby 2012)