On to another poem I wrote a while back, reflecting on time and consciousness.
THE DULL VALLEY
Intellect wanders restlessly in the dark
Directing a great electric torch:
What is seen is, the rest is not;
The torch moves on, the dark settles.
Intellect dreams of day:
Light colonises road and fell;
Street-fighting, breaks into the wood’s recesses
And the arrays of the angular library.
Between the blocks of a drystone wall,
Behind the books, in the bole of an ash,
Between the child’s clothes folded in the drawer,
The live dark pulses, waiting to ooze out
Or spring like fountain. Perhaps the time will come,
Maybe on a gripped planet, ours being done,
When day and dark will die in unison,
But not in this moment ever.
I have found a stone of time:
That is why it is heavy, it holds
Giant sloth, therapsid, dinosaur,
Beginning of life and of the universe
And maybe other universe before.
It strains my hands; I lay it down.
The open fell remembers forest and tide
And will remember the farm and my footfall
(Which I forget).
Under the rough grass, stone.
“Are you happy?” the inspector said
At the toll before waving me through.
I showed my passport and my driving licence
And he was satisfied.
Happiness fluttered like paper in the air
And was scattered in wind but the word stood;
Fountains of dark glinted in their flow,
The light whirled in the wind, the paper patterned:
Down the dull valley
I saw the outline of an ancient road.
Copyright Simon Banks 2012