These are linked poems created week by week for a year, inspired by the book No Choice But To Follow, and the poets therein who did it first.

Wednesday, 7 May 2014

May #1

When we go deep

I will change we to they.
Let the young and agile
do that caving thing
squeezing through
narrow clumps of rock
interring themselves in
the dark recesses
of my imagination.
I just have to shudder.

Then there are the divers.
At first writhing like fish,
later holding a spear
ahead of the face while
beginning to morph
into shark and octopus.
Heavier, dropping into
denser currents, hot water.
I take quick deep breaths.

There’s just too many depths
available on this planet.
You have to be truly committed
to plumb them, feel the fear,
act anyway, free-falling, sinking.
There is so much other pleasure
in skimming surfaces, dancing
like a dragonfly between
leaves, over river water.

Is my aversion past-driven?
Too many storms at sea,
midnight runs at gunpoint,
surgery, anaesthetised?
Luckily, memory is like
a skating rink: such grace
on thick ice! strung between
that frozen surface and
the furnace of the sun.

— Jennie Fraine


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