Let Me Tell You Something (spoken version)

MY APOLOGY: I went on a bit of a rant last week and deleted myself from a boatload of accounts that were taking up too much mental-space. Soundcloud was one of these accounts and therefore, the below recording no longer exists. I am looking for an alternative and will post the spoken word piece as soon as I find it.

Thanks for reading!

Kat

Surprised By The Battleground

This is an old poem that went missing. I knew I had it somewhere on an external drive, but that had gone missing too. I had forgotten the title and yesterday, I pored through the tags for this blog in an effort to find it, but to no avail.  Today, however, I discovered the usb thingy in my kitty-cat pencil case that sits to the left of me all the time. *smacks head with heel of hand

It’s not that it’s a great poem, but I like it just the same. I wrote it after reading the book, “The Drowned World” by J.G. Ballard. That was a bit of a triumph for me, since I’m not a reader of fantastic stuff, but I persisted and ending up really liking the book.

Don’t ask me what this poem means, I haven’t got a clue.

(A recording of the poem will follow as soon as I get my office relocated – very soon.)

 

Surprised By The Battleground.

We were comrades when the ship
went down;
our spirits scattered to the winds
like soaring gulls.
You wore a shocking white suit
and I, a red silk dress,
as we danced to marimba
in the midst of horrors.

We heard the buzz-buzz of the
giant bee,
as it made its line towards the
hardened ground;
our bodies blasted to the winds
like dirty gulls—
your white suit, smeared with
coffee-stains,
my red-silk dress blown up
over my head.

And we never saw it coming—
though we held the divination sticks
in our shaking hands.

Kathleen Mortensen©2010

In Sotto Voce

If you’ve read my rune today on “My Life In Runes”, you’ll know I’m feeling a bit uninspired. So I’ve decided to share a few of my older pieces and record myself reading them for you. I’m borrowing my husband’s high quality microphone, so there should be much improvement on the last post. I hope you enjoy them.

Kathleen

At Villa Diodati 

At Villa Diodati
I wish I’d been there,

(a bug on the wall—
a cat on a chair),
with Mary
and George,
John,
Percy and Claire,

Telling tales by candle,
passing a smoke;
conjuring ghosts—
sharing
a joke.

That delerium-place
filled with shadows,
unveiled,
from the dark,
to each face—
where the whitest cheek paled.

Claret, and laudanum
perhaps, were poured out;
muses, abounding,
all having
their shout.

Fantasmagoria,
birthing anew-
thrill-making creatures—
a fabulous crew!

Would kill to have been,
aloft in the air—
a mere wing’ed witness
to those monsters spawned there,

or pussycat curled
at the top of a stair—
in their Genevan lair,

at Villa Diodati.

Kathleen Mortensen©2012

January Open Mic

Thanks to Crow at Words and Feathers (click link to join in!) for hosting this terrific platform for sharing our creativity. Here is my contribution. It is rather bleak, but when I look out at the miserable day outside here, it seems very appropriate. The quality is down to my HP laptop and  Windows 10. I apologize for this.

Ice Men

A soul-compass, something inside—
(sane, or insane?)
drove them down
to the bottom of the world.

They would glide in their hard-hulled boats—Astrolabe,
Discovery, Endurance
until the ice locked them in.

Damned, on guano-beaches;
the sun (that infernal sun!) bleached their skin—
their lashes. The ashes of dead fires
told sad tales of meagre feasts.
Black and white sea-beasts broke the ice,
eager for their next meal.
Was it all real?

They waited: sheltered,
from the blowing wind,
and snow,
and sun,
under the belly of a life-boat—
surrounded by bloated seals, blood and after-birth,
squawking skua-survivors—
cold Hell.

Only the ghosts can tell us why they had to go;
how that drag, on the compass-needle could draw
them south to their destinies
or doom.

I wonder, do modern ice men
hear their voices in the gloom,
when they lie down
at night?

Kathleen Mortensen©2012