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The Prospect of Ageing

Time heals,
time mends,
time lets you
comprehend…

That grey hair
wasn’t there
yesterday!

Don’t fight
with nature,
you are it;
ever sure –

Indestructible,
unbreakable –
intertwined with nature
you will endure…

But that wrinkle –
too early…
Isn’t fair!

But YOU, you can relax;
you are not me,
so I am free
to tell you all is well –

I say to you;
embrace the cycles
nature binds us to –

And just ignore me
quietly
dyeing my hair
over here –

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How I Long To Believe –

How I long to believe in something –
how the world lets me down each time I try –
everything I believe in
seems destined to wither and die –

My heart remains full of visions
as my mind stays full of songs –
but the words die on my lips
when I ponder the past gone wrong.

I admire the certainty heard
in the voices of other people –
so sure of themselves they drown out
my voice; so frail and feeble –

How I long to believe in something –
but life has taught me – and harshly:
no truth stays truthful for long;
there is no such thing as certainty

So I maintain my silent vigil
over dreams buried and gone
and scoff at the people around me
who thinks they are right and I’m wrong

How I wish that I never believed –
that I never allowed hope to stain
my mind with its reveries…
How I wish it hadn’t all been in vain.

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One Could Write of the Future

One could write of the future.
It’s just so hard.
Because you then accept in advance
that everything you write
has a built-in expiration date.
Since the date of your choice one day
will no longer be in the future.

One could also write of the past.
That’s even harder.
How much hasn’t been forgotten or altered
and how much isn’t altered
further
with every weighted word
written or spoken of times we haven’t lived through
and therefore don’t understand.

One could also write of the present.
But what is the present?
Isn’t it past already
once the reader picks up your book?
And how much do we actually notice
while it happens
rather than through
later reflections?

One could also just stop caring
about time.
Just write the time off.
Literally.
It passes anyway
no matter what.

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The Stone Circle In Progress

The stone circle in progress
hums quietly to you
as hills through the mist
drift back into view.

The faces on the stones
observe you quietly
as you bravely traverse
this piece of history.

The peat bog winks you closer
with blinking, dim blue light;
the vapour trails that linger
will not be swept aside.

The peaceful hills at rest
protect our ancestors –
guarding the few remains
that’s all they left for us.

Look not to these round hills
for peace or solace – ever –
look, touch, observe – then pass –
but they remain forever.

The hill where nothing lives
broods over its past
by the beach without waves;
silence at last.

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I Want To Believe

I want to believe
that I could create something
that could last beyond my years.
I know however
how unlikely
that would be.

I “go there” every once in awhile
and the streets remain the same
but the houses change
or disappear entirely
and people come and go,
locations change names –
the only constant there is
that I can always find
is the brooding barrows,
ruins, stones
that reminisce a past
we don’t even remember;
something gone,
something didn’t last
again.
And here I am,
presumptuously,
whining about the human want
to last – and last – and last –
to leave a mark,
to make a mark,
to be remembered…
As if it matters in the long run
who reads me once I’m gone.

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The Apparitions Came For Me Again

The apparitions came for me again,
the ghastly, ghostly figures
came at dawn –
why now,
I do not have the time to think,
reflect,
certainly not to mourn
a time that passed
and by and large
before I myself was born.

But on the remnant wisps of dream
they flutter by
and powerless to wake I’m forced to see
time slipping backwards,
ruins rebuilding themselves
while people shrink and disappear
and others wake from sleep.

Eventually the clock resumes its ticking –
the one that stopped –
not that it even matters,
as life itself is unwearied
by the ticking of a clock
and our thoughts of passing –
we are just like the weather,
shifting, changing,
here and there
we come and pass;
what matters is the climate
and that
(sadly for us)
takes longer to assess –

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And So He Died

And so he died
who, having lived so long,
had buried so many others
and never cried.

And so we stood there
powerless for words.
A person lost, indeed,
but memories and stories
so much more importantly
that day as well were buried.

And so we wept – some of us –
puny humans with no powers
to stop this erosion
of collective memory –

And so we buried him
who had outlived so many
but who was recalled in the end
all the same.

He never told us of his thoughts
so they have all been lost.

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I Am So Glad That I Can’t See The Future

I’m so glad that I can’t see the future.
Why?
Because it would only cause me to
second-guess myself
and the decisions I am struggling to make right now.

Besides, I probably wouldn’t even believe
what I were to see –
if I’d had a vision of where I am now
five years ago
I’d thought someone had spiked my drink.

And who’s to say that the future
if I were to see
wouldn’t become something else entirely
because I were to have seen it?
Considering how nebulous a concept
even the present is
I consider that a highly likely scenario.

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I Wake in the Middle of the Night

I wake in the middle of the night
with outstretched arms
reaching for that which slips out of my grasp –
the world, life, sanity,
a future worth living in,
dreams worth dreaming
that actually stand a chance of coming true –

I fall asleep again and dream of dissolving,
dissipating,
disappearing –
I hear voices all around me
but when I answer them
they turn out to be just that;
voices
without senses
though they are embodied,
they cannot hear me
or they do not want to.

I wake in the morning, exhausted
and too tired to speak –

I tell myself that I might as well
live in the present
since it is all downhill from here
and the future gets more and more bleak
by the minute
and shrinks accordingly as well.

But if only someone listened –

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Poetry Is Contrary To Nature

Poetry is contrary to nature
in the sense that it is meant
(or at least by its poet dreamt)
to stand apart and last
when all else follows its natural cause
and ends up becoming the past.

But what is the point
of a poem that were to endure
when its context, its world,
its poet and attending words
have disappeared
and nobody understands it for sure?

What value is there really
in a text stuck in limbo
unless the future be convinced
that it contains some rare,
antiquated truth
that may be lost tomorrow?

Perhaps it’s simply better
after all
to be forgotten
rather than allow
the misinterpretation
that is sure to befall.

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Evening Dew

A trembling tune of blended birdsong
in the wood at nightfall –
the setting sun, the rising mist,
the thoughts of what today’s been done –

Your graceful poise out on the porch
as you observe the fading beams of day –
it must’ve been the evening dew
that stained your cheeks – and then you’d say;

“the world is changing all too fast, and so is I,”
and turned your saddened amber eyes to me –
but I will not believe that tears could be
the substance trickling down the face of you;

the foremost of this world’s now-living men?
It cannot be – it was the evening dew.

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Herald of Destruction

I carry bricks and tile with me in my pockets whenever I go to the city. At least it seems so. Every time I return to my hometown I find an old house torn down – every time I go to the city I find a new one erected.
It feels oddly like a curse – as if I draw life with me, and subsequently cause decay in my home whenever I go somewhere else. And it is perhaps an apt metaphor. I do work in the city. I do live there. I do spend my money there and pay my taxes there, even though the city is an ungrateful host that cares nothing for me whereas my hometown would have known to appreciate my effort. It’s just that… I can’t find work in my hometown. Or on the entire island for the matter. The further you get from the city, the less need there is for programmers – and it’s impossible to make a living based on writing, however much I would have liked to.

Continue reading Herald of Destruction

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Når jeg lukker øjnene

Når jeg lukker øjnene ser jeg
bølgerne rejse sig;
sivende der sukkende bøjer sig;
det flakkende lys fra mit
hjemlands vægelsindede sol –
nej, lyset fra fakler
båret gennem byen –
byen er skrumpet;
en opløst sukkerknald –
husene står uvirkeligt skæve
og små
med tomme, måbende ruder –
biler suser forbi langt borte
fra den døsige stilhed her;

et ur omkranset af vildvin
med en viser der evigt viser
12:19;
mosset har indtaget gulvet,
en fugl suser kvidrende
ud ad en smadret rude;
dernæst
stilhed.

Hele mit liv
var larm –
summen af menneskestemmer,
summen af liv;
baggrundsstøj –
livets enerverende underlægningsmusik,
men når jeg lukker øjnene ser jeg
stilhedens rige
der er fremtiden;
min ensomme fakkel
kaster enorme skygger
på nutidens afskallede eftermæle –
der er vand på gulvet,
en fisk strejfer min ankel
i et kort glimt af sølv
i faklens lunefulde skær –
hvis jeg åbner øjnene
kan jeg sammenligne med nutiden,
men også høre den summen
fra det store menneske-bo
jeg er midt i –
hellere holde dem lukkede
for så ser jeg
at der ikke er nogen grund til snak
siden al snak skal forstumme
og stilheden råde
med undtagelse
af de dovne dråber der falder fra spær,
vinden der bøjer sivene;
jordens åndedræt –
jeg ser jordens døsige eksistens
der ikke behøver os,
der når som helst kan sparke os af sig
hvis vi forstyrrer dens grublen –
når jeg lukker øjnene
går uret i stå
i den fremtid hvor ingen levende væsner
behøver “tid”,
behøver sprog –
den fremtid
der slutter en dag
kl. 12:19 –
hver gang jeg lukker øjnene
er den allerede
sluttet…

Faklen syder da den rammer vandet;
mørke.

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Fremtiden skrumper

Engang var fremtiden stor.
Engang var fremtiden.

Nu varer den højst en time
og så får vi se…
Jeg kan se frem til det næste
tik fra urets visere –
men ikke meget videre.
Engang var fremtiden
planer –
store, smukke planer
om at forbedre og perfektere
hele verden
eller i det mindste
personlige planer
om jobs og bolig og
den størrelse de voksen kaldte
kærlighed –
nu er fremtiden
at se frem til at elkedlen koger
eller at vækkeuret ringer
efter en søvnløs nat;
den er at planlægge hvornår
man skal betale regninger
og vaske tøj
og vande blomster.

Engang var fremtiden –

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Dansen i ruinerne

Fortidens slør
smyger sig om min krop
ved hvert trin
jeg tager gennem ruinerne –
hvert trin et dansetrin
og fortidens slør
gør de døde levende
omkring mig –
jeg ser dem omkring mig
alle optagne
af det liv de tror de har –
døgnfluer som os
må klamre sig til hvad de kender
men det nytter ikke
noget –
til sidst er alt kun
fortid –
smuldrende sten der var et slot,
vrag der var skibe,
skeletter der var mennesker;
forfædre til dem
der endnu ikke
kun er skeletter –
jeg hører et brus af kjoler
og stemmer der taler
i brudstykker
på et sprog jeg kun delvis forstår
at jeg ikke forstår –
et sprog der i dag ikke er –
men dog er –
var –
mit sprog.

Fortidens slør
smyger sig tit og ofte
omkring os når vi taler –
særligt med folk fra andre lande;
pludselig er vi ikke
forsagte,
kontrære,
satte…
Pludselig er vi
dristige erobrere,
opfindere,
pionerer…

Der var engang et land
der drømte…
Nu er der et folk
der ikke vil vågne
og kun ser sig selv
gennem fortidens slør
der klæber til dem,
langsomt kvæler dem
mens de selv ser de lysende balsale
omkring dem
og danser gennem ruinerne
uden at vide
at intet står tilbage –
nej, ikke noget lidt fernis ikke kan fiske –
nej, ikke noget lidt maling ikke kan tage –

Jeg vågner træt og øm
på et hårdt stengulv
under åben himmel –
jeg ser de andre danse
omkring mig,
lykkelige
ulyksalige væsner.
De kan ikke se mig
eller høre min stemme
med sløret over ansigtet –

Jeg går stille bort
alene.

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Vinden der blæser

En magnetisk kraft skubber mig væk –
jeg rækker frem men jeg kan aldrig nå –
en vind blæser mig bagud;
det er den
som alle mennesker holdes nede ad –
småting, jordting, tidsbegrænsning,
med værdi de ikke har –

Hvad nytter det at svømme mod strømmen?
Det tapper dig for kraft
og bringer dig
ingen vegne?

Men polerne vender af sig selv
før eller siden.

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Old, Torn Lace

Old, torn lace
hanging draped
over a sunkissed face.

We’re old as a species
though the planet thinks us young.

Paint that scales
off house facades –
crackled pavements
worn by decades.

Weathered, wooden fences –
weathered, broken tiles.
Weathered, petrified
concrete – stretching miles.

Stiff, unbending people.
Feet that keep on coming.
Weathered fossils clinging –
wanting to stay young.

Green sprouts are tearing
at concrete coffin-spaces
leaving old, torn lace
meshes in their places.

We’re old as a species
though the planet thinks us young
and sooner than both know
we shall have been and gone.

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My Antiquities

The things I valued
not so long ago –
the things for which I lived
and the ones I left untold
are all now piled together
into one close-packed rhyme
for all now share in fate:
They’ve fallen out of time.

Those things I used to care for,
and those I used to hate,
are all now out of store;
oblivion their fate.

The school I used to go to
has left the Earth and passed.
The town that I grew up in
is breathing at its last.
The people I once knew
have disappeared from view
and it’s no consolation
to think of all the new.

The things I once believed in
is history today.
The earliest of my paintings
is buried under rubble;
nothing is to stay.

But who cares for my words
and who cares for the truth?
The world we live in now
cares only for success and youth.
To say that nothing lasts,
to say that all’s in vain
is not to be expected
to strike a common strain.

And that is why in silence
within my withering heart
I ponder my antiquities
alone and in the dark.

What others will forget
for me alone remains.
What others want achieve
for me is what’s been had
and cannot be again.

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All There Is Left Now

An open, empty field
covered only by the grass
where something used to be –
well, something had to pass

I stare at the empty space
and cannot fathom this –
all that is left is emptiness

Passing shooting stars
and you’re asked to make a wish
though the thought of that wish
is as short as shooting stars –

I stare at this face
halfway expecting a caress
although all that is left now is emptiness

An open, empty field
where our time was often passed
in a building now torn down –
nothing is meant to last

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A Crooked Tree – I

A lonely being, standing at the crossroad,
abandoned by your family and friends –
the healthy, youthful lot who once stood by you,
now long gone – used as firewood by humans,
made into planks, tools, ornaments of unknown use to you –
and here you stand alone, grown old in years,
long having outgrown all the youthful fears
of feeling the steel-blade which all the others felt –
you know now that your shape protects therefrom,
you’re useless – and therefore you have been left alone,
have long since into full potential grown –
but rather than feel blessed, you ask, in all your solitude:
“Why live; when lonely, miserable – bereft of friends and youth?”

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Birdsong

Warble birds your sweet, sweet song.
Never stop. Go on. Go on.
My heart’s heavy, my song’s spent.
My head’s heavy, earthward bent.

Sing a song of sweet delight,
send it upwards to the light
while I wander in the shade
waiting for my song to fade.

Warble birds – it’s soothing balm,
warble and instill some calm
to the evening I pass by
from your hiding in the sky.

But don’t ask for sing-along,
I have lost all joy in song;
My song’s spent, my head hangs low –
My love went; where did she go?

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Nykteri 1.

At first it might’ve been a swell
a minor one to form, but in the vast expanse
of open ocean it could well
to such a size and shape that when advanced
to shorelines it could so amaze
and scare with all its might
that after its withdrawal, at its vapour trace
everyone who witnessed it
could but expressed delight

I say “it might” for I cannot recall
what happened when I met you long ago,
and after all this time and after all
we have been through how could I know
a thing that hasn’t been tainted
or at the least amended
by much later events we’ve shared?
Or coloured by the things I never dared
to tell you, which continued to
plague me whenever I saw you?

It has been years, it’s been eternity
for all I know, since we first met –
as children in a school class,
and when I first had set my eyes on you
when you walked through the door
I saw reflected in your face
the outline of a destiny:
To love and cherish someone
whose partner
I could never become

At first I didn’t feel the impact
but over time it grew in size
and though I summoned the utmost tact
I could barely contain it,
forbid it from making itself known
although it often did attempt to rise
within me; demanding to be shown,
to be of strength beyond belief and be
yet still of a, however fatal, beauty

Nykteri, your nickname which was all
that I could give you then,
you became my friend
but all that I today recall
with all the details it deserves
is love I never shared with you
although I all other secrets spilled –
with or against my will –
just to be seen by you

As time progressed and we grew up
love grew in size as I myself –
and yet I was too shy,
too insecure to tell

And time went by
and we went separate ways –
friendship waned with distance
but in many ways
although you were another place
and all around me everything had changed
my feelings didn’t care.

It was a pain to see you
and not being seen by you.
You did remain my love,
my pale, cold, distant celestial light,
and though I wished that I could blame it all
on you for never seeing what was there
I could not stop myself from wishing you were there,
so that I could tell you – without fear –
it all – it, everything – despite the fact that you
had already chosen another instead of me.

And though I tried there was no stopping this,
I lived my life in inward solitude and wished
for what would never happen, your return;
the thought alone was all for which I yearned.

But as is plainly known, what can’t be said
is often best with silence said –
your absence spoke as clear to me
as any words that you could then have said.

My answer to the question which I never asked
was right in front of me
in shape of what I feared I’d never get to see;
your face again in front of me,
Nykteri!

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New Poem: “The Wait”

I waited for the snowfall
but finally when it came
the snowflakes melted in the air
before they reached the ground
and all remained the same.

I waited for the sunshine
but when I finally caught a beam
it had no strength against the chill
so seeing how it came and went
might just as well have been a dream.

I look ahead, now void of hope
and wonder: What might stay
if anything at all.
Why bother grasping anything:
It comes and goes away.