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Posts Tagged ‘sand’

I’m No Frank

Frank Lloyd Wright

and his falling water. Masses

of concrete cantilevered,

and extending outwards

like hands reaching- symbiosis.

But I’m no Frank

and dreams might be

my little fingers clasping

hard and pushing pencils

for somebody else’s utopia.

 

The hewn boulders of rock

resisting the foundation

on which this grand design sits,

I bear the weight of expectations.

Balancing upon the scales

on which the measure of cement

is mixed in sand and water.

The lapping over of slates into a bond.

The forward thrust of hammer to nails.

The tightening of ties around stirrups.

The alternate laying of the roof decking.

 

And the network of drain pipes,

cables and ducting, and waterlines

resembling the veins and sinews

of the building’s skeleton. I build

a symbol- the framework of the mind.

The genius envisions an edifice

in his intellectual acrobatics,

justifying to the world the modern-

reality that build themselves on paper.

 

Summoning the masons to lay

its plaster to newly cured blocks.

The painter to swab the walls

in fresh coats. The decorator

sets the chairs, the beds,

the mirrors and the tables.

The vases and layers of curtains.

The lifeless sculpture pieces

and paintings hanged to the walls.

Fixing rolls of wallpaper  and carpets

over polished granite floors.

 

The carpenter assembling

cabinet boxes, ledges and shelves.

The windows fitted to the sills.

And the doors hanged on frames.

The location of the chandelier.

Installing wooden slabs on stairs.

The green patinated balustrades.

The landscaper to plant shrubs, and ferns

and vines and trees and patch of grass.

The water fountains and the waterfall

arranged mimicking a natural set-up.

 

But I ‘m no Frank.

The hours stretched for miles and miles.

The drafting table becoming wet with fog

until  the first  hours of the morning.

I can hear the mad conversations

of the vellum and the graphite saying,

“deadline nears, it’s almost here”.

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We walk along the beach to see

the happy couples like us staring at the ocean.

And see how the waves come and go

subduing our blues, buried under the sand.

Did we become a tourist of our own,

devoid of pleasure on being together?

We walk like solitary man and woman

glancing sideways, avoiding leisure

as if children were lost running both ways

chasing happiness out of sight. Dreaming

of lost balloons. Of lost kites. Of empty boats

bobbing, floating and drifting away.

We smile blankly and falsely wonder

about the beach umbrella blown in the wind

and the white surf racing past each other

to reach you. And me, while I am trying

to mute down my gaze towards a space

where shadows of people begins to fade

under the sheltering weight of the high noon.

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I can feel it now across this table

in the old diner of this no man’s land,

The sound of shuffling deck of cards.

Or is it the leaves in autumn falling

in September- that he will remember?

 

Do you know what it feels like

to be buried in cans and tins of paint,

blurring away the sun, moon and the stars?

The distance masked from the past

drowned in ebbs and crests of time.

 

He searches his soul among the shambles,

the printed letters fading on the pocketbook.

I sense the mad rhythms and cadences

of cursives and scribbles in melancholy.

The dead poet speaks uneasy like this.

 

He seems to be trapped. A vagabond.

A tyke on his cell who think he’s free.

Swimming away like a salmon

undisturbed by the changing seasons,

lost in migration to the new world.

 

He traded a king of hearts

and settles for a jack of spades.

The wind is rough, blowing in with sand.

This is not the gentle breeze of the prairie.

A tune. Unfamiliar, humming in my ear.

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His face is a map of caravan years,

weathering the desert sun and

the seasonal flood by the riverbank

which brings in salt for a modest living.

 

As the sand windblown and collected

in the seams of his linen turban,

anxiety constantly snake through

the mazes of his troubled mind.

 

He needed money.

 

Like how the puff of smokes

from his cigarette escapes

are fragments of his ancestor’s past

excavated from walls of antiquity.

 

He is mulling to leave the landscape

of ancient ruins, the mud-dried bricks

and clayed houses and desert wilderness

for the glowing lights of the city.

 

The mosque signals the call to prayer

and he sat down on his cushion

unfurling a sheaf of parchment,

reading through his mangled glasses

 

the fragile scribbling of faded ink.

On its brittle yellowing pages appears

like gold. This manuscript he wants to sell

to tourists he is waiting to pass by.

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Someone have told me

that when your feet begins

to dig deeper into the ground,

as if you are carrying a heavy rock

upon your shoulders.  Do not fail

to look up and turn your eyes

from looking down.  And you will

discover  the big sky above you.

 

Let the wide space fill your mind.

Embrace the world and fathom

the depth, the height and width of it.

Let the wind carry your spirit-

a dot in the sand completing

this tapestry of life. You belong

to a grand plan, ever since

when the universe is born.

 

No matter how fearsome it would become

No matter how fierce the odds are.

No one will take away your piece of sky.

Be steady and look beyond the horizon.

Drift like an eagle  among the clouds.

Redeem  your place in the sun.

As hope burn brightly like a new day.

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The clock strikes the twelfth hour.

As the familiar sound of wind chimes signals

another year of moving on,  slow and steady.

Remembering the images of the man

within the constant, shifting revolutions

of sunrise and sundown in this woman’s life.

 

Witnessing how lifelong travels have ended,

forging across countless dinnertime of growing old.

Around the fireplace, rekindling romance.

Recalling the stories of the fishermen,

of sailors down the Mediterranean.

Of cowboys in the Wild West

and the wildlife in Africa.

Of the mystical journeys

from the sands of Arabia

to the sands of Samarkand.

 

Those intimate exchanges of lofty dreams

and grand ambitions traveling marvelous

distances of north going down south.

The eastern spring and the wintry west.

Witnessing how she listened. And almost

forgot the difference, whether it is

the story of this man’s life in the stories.

Or simple make-believe.

 

Witnessing how she wobbled achingly

at her feet standing up and lighting a candle,

whispering a prayer. Memories became

mighty flexing arms reaching out for the years.

Discovering the man who makes her laugh

and who makes her cry the silent tears.

Witnessing a love that will never grow old.

Those quiet devotion as ageless and tireless,

pacing along with the hands of time.

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Someone had it written clear-

that one should not just keep pacing

on this earth, like a  somnambulist do.

Instead, he should lay beside the grass.

Ears close to the ground hearing

faint sounds and whispers coming

from the earth’s bosom.

 

Hearing how the rhythmic breath

of stillborn seeds of coniferous trees

waiting to break out of its shell,

awakening to the hymn of the spring.

 

Hearing how aquifers running deep

into crevices, into rivers, carving

canyons, gorges, fjords to the open seas.

Sailing away, riding with the wind.

 

Hearing the tides keep pushing,

and pulling in. Or the breaking waves

into the cliffs. Scouring the shoreline

of an island down to the ocean floor.

 

Hearing how the mountains gliding

its terrestrial skin past each other.

Like a potter reshaping and remolding

the land into a new continent.

 

Hearing how it grumbles beneath,

venting out ash plumes and lava streams.

A force roused from deep slumber

churning mood swings in its womb.

 

Someone had it written clear-

that one should not just keep pacing

on this earth, like a  somnambulist do.

 

We should hear the gathering storms

of the impending avalanche. Iceberg splitting.

The glacier receding.  Oil gushes, spilling

over the gulf. Helpless cacophony of wildlife

endangered. Landslides and the levees

breached by hurricane. Rainforest on fire.

Desert sands advancing. Clods of soil

drying up. Locusts swarming over fields.

Ground crumbling into sinkholes.

 

We should hear how restless it gets

day after day, when  the clock is ticking out.

Faint sounds becoming loud voices

sending distress call to reckon with,

summoning mankind to listen. The earth

finally eclipsing to its perilous journey.

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