by Roy K Austin
THE INNER VOICE OF MARK BIRROS
With that invisibilty of age
I can fly my life like a kite !
Uninvited and unseen,
albescent, grey, you know what I mean,
( not the first flush of youth or strong,
the young forget that we were young, )
hold on to that, the string of that
to grip the meaning of it
as I grip the iron balustrade
along the miles of esplanade ;
think the century's wise men are ignored,
each lamp a light, a sage for each lamp.... ...
Drawn to the Sailor's Arms, her kegs
the weight of years upon the legs,
for whispers round an inglenook
where galaxies are in the glass,
to swap a tale, another round,
a golden fleece, a crumpled map !
Or waft around for words, like smoke
along the butt - ends from the tar,
or vanish down into the draught
if Alan Watts is at the bar.... ...
Below, where gulls quarrel in kelp
no harbour there need shelter me,
no life - boat slip to cries for help
need bring my spirit to the lee -
I hear the past with all its murders,
the wind wail through the rusting girders
yet still am I, free to fly with you
who lean against the railings, too !... ...
The world may seem to come in bits -
let nonduality begin ?
Come celebrate your opposites
for all depends on loss to win !
Tribal culture in your face -
to win is everywhere you turn,
if love is losing all the time
then will we ever, ever learn ?... ...
'You'll win' he said, 'its in the bag',
out on the point
what can the mindless wind do
but wave the flag?
Missing the point forever
signalling our nascent spirit.
And the voice said
'raise your head when the night is cloudless
and tell me,who are you subject to,
remember the truth of your own story
as your eyes take in the glory'.... ...
Full to be empty, empty to be full -
do you hear the paradox, do you feel the pull ?
I do not mean to be patronising,
have I asked you too soon ?
Do you see what I mean when you gaze at the moon,
when the full moon, lifeless, is full of light ?... ...
I sit upon the lobster pots
that decorate the harbour wall,
if you come a little closer
you can see me in the hall,
if you do not hold the key-
Mrs keepings locks the door,
I'll be looking out to sea
after eight but not before.... ... ...
I am seen from the inside of the inside,
not the inside of the outside, mark you
not from what I look like or do
but the interior of what do I mean ?
Quite literally - 'when all is said and done'.
Not the illusion of grandeur
but the lila and maya - the joy of divine play
the grandeur of illusion.
The causal spirit, the cause of sense
and the cause of what is seen,
the cause of the unseen in between,
the concatenations - all that links to the whole-
that is you, my friend, your very soul;
the royal seer, looking through your eyes
that in abdication you conveniently forgot.
as I sit here on the throne of my brain
decked in the trappings of thought,-
lassoed by that closed loop,
a prisoner lacking meditation
what thick walls are built by thinking,
half sought, half caught
by what I already am.
I hear the noise of the world now
at the altar of my ear,
Again the voice has said to me
your archetype enfolds you
but within it's sacred keep
you sleepwalk through your world;
you huddle together with others in your darkness
and call it your religion,
give priests their priestly powers
letting them feed on your ignorance;
you must be in touch with your inside -
ultimate reality is 'your kingdom '
and that kingdom is always there
and never, never elsewhere;
in there you must be fearless -
have ' the courage to be '
as when ' christ the tiger came ',
a man who showed his day
a way, which is not the way now,
he foresaw his words would be surpassed
if they were lived inwardly
and not outwardly emulated.
One must be like the wandering albatross
facing the skies and oceans of ones own.
If one is raised by children
one will become a child
that must leap to adulthood
which is no - self acceptance and realisation,
the latter, denial not of that which is real
but of that which is unreal,
not as pulpit to the pew,
not as clergy say you do do you exist.
'Be a light to your own mind' said the enlightened sage,
the wine is corked my friend !
The fog of centuries must clear,
so that that morning of divine splendour,
no longer hidden, may break through
as the bright morning sun,
so that Atman may be Atman
and Christ as all men
for then, beyond the stream of time,
all will have never occurred
and the Kingfisher will perch again
over a quiet a stream.... ... ...
From a high vantage point
let light, seeking out the shade
be every human contact made,
alienation is unkind -
we need to touch the braille of mind ;
what spirit intercedes unseen,
long suffering, a friend between
those lonely figures on the beach ?
Though tongue - tied they may long for speech.... ... ...
Mr Rush begrudges me
the weather and the time of day,
I wish I'd known him more, before
he had nothing else to say,
like a Lowry figure, blurred
elsewhere beckons him away,
time is running out for us
if he will not stop and say
'good morning Mr Birros !
How are you today '?
Out at sea the day descends,
a sail to lee, a journey ends
as sunlight glitters on the flood
from sky, the colour of the blood
as from the living fauna shed ;
a buzzard, circles overhead ;
a mill had caught the wind for bread
and dusk, like dawn was something said,
in whispers at the end of day,
as wisdom, nothing else to say
save rest a body for a night
or give a shepherd his delight,
or turn my spirit to the west
when I, reluctantly must go,
at evening, in the afterglow. ... ...
Without the memories of this world there is no persona ! -
Who am I ? I immediately ask them for an answer,
but I do not believe them anymore. Thus I am deceived
by the world from the cradle. Is it a divine game, I wonder
for paradoxically, I need to rediscover my true self
and that requires memory too. Memories of a different kind,
memories of peace, bliss though not oblivion, indescribable
colours, sights and sounds that are the very oxygen of the soul,
memory of love and being loved, but strangely enough, not
memory of words. In this context, words are absurd and as
dead as the persona ; present company reluctantly accepted
if you know what I mean !
' Let the dead bury the dead ' said Christ,
bearers of the body
walk crookedly with pseudo geist ;
poke the ash, poke fun at someone
as shadows fall upon the gnomon ;
see them creep their route -
the floral limousine that shouts
through the dull cluttered streets,
block the 'living daylights' out
as they bury Mr No one.... ...
Being reaches out from depth and for a span
all space and time accumulates to man,
though faith be what we may not see
being, cannot cease to be !... ... ...
(As left undone)
Test the sinews, yawning,
nimbus glares forbodingly,
seaward wind this morning
slants the rain away from me,
brolly, sprouting from the back-
grey blue sky with streaks of black,
the calves will get soaking wet
dripping down to soak the feet ; -
one thing that I always dread
looking out inside my head ;
tomorrow is another day -
draw back the curtains all the way !
No guilty footprints, dirty traces,
my boots are vacant, trail their laces -
keep Mrs Keepings in her place,
I see it, written in her face.... ... ...
Thinking of you all the time my dear -
and I'll find that old tree of yours,
where we use to dream of bygone days
on the old road to the moors,
and I'll drink again at the smuggler's arms
to the vows we made one another,
and I'll wait for your stage that never comes
through the creeping mist and the heather,
for still lies my heart on that old stony road
where I said I'd love you forever.... ... ....
I remember a time when seven was old
and those hay - ricks were seen there, crossing the wold,
when church doors would open - never to lock
and hours were missed from not reading the clock,
with nodding horses and a Constable sky
and a watermill with a stream running by,
when days of summer seemed golden and long
now lost as a tune to an ancient song ;
much closer to me than that orbital pass
are all of these bygones, defying ‘ the glass ‘,
for what we have lost is like bread without leven
or the lie of the land as a way to a heaven.... ... ...
Tenant of a sheltered house
daydreams in a ' sleepy corner '
gliding through those ' windy straits '
with life's hand upon his shoulder ;
his time ebbing with the tide
folds his clothing tidily,
footprints covered by the sea ;
ageless as the cause of him -
gazing through the eye of one,
like a comet on it's way
burning brightly from the sun !
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