published  1987




When the Hills awake to anger
Love Song
In memory of my aunt, Muriel Sascha McCosker
In praise of my husband's mistress
The Lie

When the Hills awake to anger

Poem written after a girl was drowned while on an adventure course in the highlands of Scotland

When the hills awake to anger
And the furious water leaps
Down its bouldered gullies
As a water-falling ocean
Breaking track of every burn,
Hard the heart of God appears
Or is there God at all,
To those who face in the river's spate
The death of a bonny girl.

Once long ago Mankind believed
The gods in spite would kill
And Nature's fury was indeed
Sigh of his warring world.
So Man would make his sacrifice
To appease these childish gods,
Flatter their temper still,
Hoping to avoid the hate
And the savage tempest of their will.

When the winds howls through the heather
Till the rocks crouch back in pain
And clouds are kicked across the sky
By violent squalls of rain,
In this tumult of the heavens
What does Man believe
As Death once more takes to itself
Like sacrifice of old
The best, most innocent.

Does he now see some wrathful God
Lusting to destroy
Or a chaos he calls Nature
Into which Mankind is caught?
Or does he see that he himself
Has forced this Death to live?
In making Man into a god
He like a god has called
For his own sacrifice.

Foam rising up like fingers
Curls to catch the throat
Of Man because he turns away
From true knowledge of the Law.
Death will come swiftly in the storm
As Man with God competes
In tantrum of human will
Until through anarchy on earth
Comes vision of the Lord.

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Love Song

I am flooded in light
As you lie in your grace
Spent about my body.
All night is silent in the stars
And I am one and one
Myself and you, existence mated,
And all the other of creation
Now moves within my flesh.
Woman and man, female and male
Not one but two I lie
And for a little while
I tremble as the whole,
Am troubled and at rest.

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Throb of love that liquid flows
Through veins into a sea
Of dappled dancing streets.
Smooth limbs twist free as thunder storms
Into a dream of longing
A-swirl by warm courtyards.
Each prancing gondola awakes
Within the wave the lover laps
As flesh turns to a tide
By every marble stair.
Power gathers beauty into arms
Ripe as the moon that roundly lies
White curve across canals.
Hot movement undulates to shade
Of figured fountain-head
Beneath a bridge that arches high
To sky reflecting sails
Tossed up from waterways.
Long fingers ache with touching walls
Of wet weed-curling hair
As thrust of tongue in oceans roll
Wide lips to kiss again.
Like rippling blood that laughs through love
Venice darts with revelry.

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In memory of my aunt, Muriel Sascha McCosker

Now let us talk of death
Not thinking of any end.

Let us face this puzzle,
This strange so certain thing
Knowing that we both in life
Do understand each other.
For even dying has a joy
If we alone, together,
Can find fulfilment that before
Was denied to us by others.

We know that you are dying
And this is the last time
I speak, here, to you.
Yet let us now not fight against
This death that seeks you so.
For it is death that does allow
My soul to freely show itself,
Give love unto your soul.

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I stood in that corrie, lost,
For the track had disappeared,
Alone, I paused to think
In that jagged twist of rock.

Silent, still, unmoving,
Nature it seemed was asleep
Only I lived in that place
Where the hills like a frown lay deep.

Silent, still, unmoving,
Yet then I knew
Which way wound the pass
That I must scramble through.

The voice of the wild had spoken,
Told me in nature's tongue
Silent, still, unmoving,
Speech from all Life to one.

I stood in that corrie's peace
Being in a another world,
Where nature is willing to teach
But Man must listen to learn.

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In praise of my husband's mistress

At last, my dear, I clearly see
Why she has enthralled you,
And you, delighting in her moods
Like abstracted solitude.

For she, yes, only she can prove
That men in lust have lied,
Through wanton wish for power
Destroyed so many lives.

Oh perfect form of truth
That will not be misused,
Or forced to favour those
Who have the facts abused.

Never shall I have the right
To love her as you do,
Fulfil that type of thinking
She is always seeking.

But now, my dear, I understand
Your worship of that face
Whose lineaments will never let
The Lie control its grace.

Oh Mistress Mathematics!
So gloriously you now can scorn
Photography that does deceive
And History of forged belief.

When Man has shattered
Commonsense to madness
You stand supremely sane
Your identity unchanged.

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The Lie

'Ye shall not surely die',
Prince Satan said.
Full well he knew this was a lie
Yet he was pleased to ponder
On the grief of Man to follow
If he turned away from Truth.

And so groans now this world
For, like ivy that from one root
Entwines and smothers fruit
And claws the petal shut
Twisting upwards round the tree
Crippling branch and fruit,
So covered now this world with lies
Which growing from that first great Lie
Clothes falsely all Mankind.
Each lie lives hard upon the one beneath
Which in its turn bends down,
Down to the Devil's root.

The world is dying of the Lie
Yet weary of the Lie it still does lie
Fearing the Truth as smugglers fear the sun
That will reveal their contraband.
So Satan still can use the lie
As his chief weapon.
He who would rule a world
Destroyed of love and laughter
Will use all liars as the tools
With which to build his empire.
He cares not what their banners say
Their lies are what he wants.

And now are nations used
And peace disrupted
As ignorance makes liars
Of those who will not study.
For as a bridge constructed
Upon false facts and figures
Will crumble with its load
Into the depths beneath
No matter how well meaning
The labourers who built it,
So now do honest men
Work for Prince Satan's agents.

Within each heart the Lie has twisted
False tentacles round Truth
And from this root has come a pride
That will not now acknowledge
Man once so easily was duped
And tricked to be a loser.
So now men call for Justice
And yet refuse to alter
The concepts of their minds
They originally chose to follow,
Forgetting that their first choice
May still not be a winner.

A spark of light some men see
Yet to the fire are blind,
They will not see the greater light
For this may even undermine
Their role as leaders in the fight
Against Prince Satan's agents
Their petty power must be secured
Their self importance sheltered.
Now they march on, on with fools
To gather in the nations
Towards one world of tyranny
With Right forever shattered.

Thus does Man mask deceit
And paint his mind with slogans
Contriving so to cover
That germinating Lie
Which sprang into his heart
When he first decided
To turn away from God.
Yet festering darkness grows beneath
This face of ignorance
And every one who leans upon
The easy lie to blind research
Is of Prince Satan used.

How long, how long has Truth
Been word of hidden fact,
Buried history,
Within the devil's book?
Page after page the centuries
Are written to deceive
By hands that scheme for power,
Fingers inked with greed.
Caught in this print the nations
Struggle without hope
As every line now added
Allows the Lie more scope.

No peace will come from politics,
A fawning game for fools
Who play to galleries now fed
A lying past and future.
Trained in such scenes of bathos
Men rush around the globe
Cross-eyeing votes and gold.
What party manifesto
Does any Justice show?
What hope from politics that pull
People like puppets from the facts
And twist their lineage.

The agony of Palestine
Would as a mirage fade
In Truth,
And Ireland's desperate sorrow
Sobs from no knowledge
Of her ancient song.
And if the world had troubled
To read one line
Of the Rhodesian tale
Her jerking limbs of pain
Bleeding to the grave,
Would not have happened..

So tangled are the nations now.
Within a net of lies
Spawned by a cunning killer
Few minds can comprehend
The multitudes he's trapped
Like beasts beneath a bloodied fist,
Or how his fingers twining twist
Through city, hamlet, town,
Continent and island,
Knotting every body
Into an endless error
Of human tragedy.

And where is sanity of Thought
That should with Reason ease
The torture of this world?
Injected so with venom
It now a madman minds
An intellect so wrong
That healthy nature is betrayed
By such distorted power;
And like a shrivelled skull
The brain of man is wasted
Into a lie of bone
Crushing his observation.


Thought thus so fooled
Skips in fantastic realms
As crazy as itself.
So do our intellectuals
Clown in a vast asylum
Of their own creation.
They leech upon the Lie
To hide their own impotence
To save all eyes from seeing
Their lack of brilliance.
For truth to genius will give
Energy to make all sane.

Caught now within this lunacy,
Art mirroring madness
Appears like one possessed
By all its opposites.
No vision of perfection
Where Beauty informs Thought
Rises to grace Man's sight.
Only a skeleton
Wrongly constructed
Is the masterpiece acclaimed
As the model of Prince Satan
Jeers at society.

Science that should understand
The forces of a universe
Willing to comfort
And give delight to everyone
By knowledge of all Nature,
Fights its own discipline
And scorns to follow facts
In case what is revealed
Would humble man although it helped
To save humanity.
For easily has the devil teased
Man into acting God.

So is real partnership destroyed
And petty men made tyrants
Out of a common hate
For anyone who would explain,
As poet, prince or prophet,
The littleness of 'human'.
For only giants understand
That Man is like a midget sawing
The trunk that holds the leaves
Under which he takes his rest,
And soon the tree will tumble down
Crushing all human breath.

Thus churches do no longer preach
The Law of their Creator.
They mouth, like mummies swathing death
Careless sermons to lost souls.
Two fold now religion helps
That tempting Will for power
Which would destroy the world,
As with an arrogance of fear
Men from the pulpit throw
The book that does so carefully
Uncover with a Master's Word
The whole secret of hell.

And does the Lie not live beneath
The bishop's shimmering cape
And gather pace with a cheerful grin
As the non conformist sings?
Now the baptised Christian kneels
Before gods that are not his
And aids in wilfulness of pride
Those wishing to enslave him
When church throws out wisdom,
Expects politics to solve
All suffering,
They act as torturer.

The home with turmoil now is filled
For every family unaware
Succours its enemy,
As through the window, in the door,
By crevice, creak and chimney stack,
Something demented finds it way
Into the ordered hearth;
And there does scatter like a storm
All treasured forms of love
Gathered through centuries of care.
Nothing has any more its place,
Mad hands can only tear.

Once Truth has left the heart of Love
And every member of one blood
Wants, as the delinquent would,
Self gratification,
Lost is the will to act
For any common good;
And every cell in every race
Curls decadent to chaos.
As chaos does more chaos make
Most gladly has Prince Satan seized
Upon his havoc in the home
As more cover for his schemes.

Mankind from evil will not turn
For as he once did freely choose
To take the Lie as Lord,
Thus plunging into realms beyond
His power of understanding,
He like a child is lost
In the jungle of his misjudgement.
And every inch he trips along
This path of self -delusion
Tears him in panic to proceed
Deeper into the vining gloom
Where all is shadowed silence.

Yet there is light even within
The most cavernous corner
Of a jungle's undergrowth,
Once intellect and vision
Have swept aside the fear and pride
That is Man's treacherous guide.
For even as the Lie has twined
Itself through all the ages
So has the truth beside it crept
There to appear in parallel
To anyone who would believe
That both threads can be recovered.

Much fact is known, much revealed,
Stored in the shelves of history
Behind popular facades
That give the Lie the lead.
The threads can be untwisted,
Man can his right path find
If he will only undertake
To use the gifts he's given
Of language and reason,
Memory and observation,
And with humanity allow
Honesty belongs to Life.

Free speech must then the servant be
Of any man who really seeks
To find and follow God.
For then will lies at last be seen
As contrary to observation
And fact can then be proved against
The liar's contradictions.
Free speech will stop the despot
Of village or of nation
Choking the leader with his learning
Before he reaches out to teach
The simple man and woman.

As Truth fears nothing
No one need fear
That it will ever harm the cause
Of justice for all nations.
Only the tyrant seeks to hide
Behind censorship of speech,
And shrivels honest argument
Against his personal greed.
No one can know all facts
Or perfect be in judgement.
There must be wide discussion
To outwit Prince Satan's dreams.

Without free speech Man uncontrolled
Lies as the devil's plaything
Harnessed to certain death.
For Truth is mother to the Law
That governs Love and Life.
As long as we ignore
The nature of our problem
And deliberately turn away
From discussion of all facts,
So will all nations sigh beneath
An ever growing illness
Which that first Lie did spawn.

Free speech is tolerant of those
It does not first agree with
And, with knowledge of that weakness
Humanity is heir to,
It listens as others speak.
Yet all must understand
The vigilance required
If such a liberty
Would serve only Justice.
For even free speech can be used
By tolerance of lies
To kill itself and Life.

Mankind seek now the Truth
There is no other way.
Like Gulliver the world does lie
Tied down with myriad lies
And only energy that flows
From primal Law's right use
Will free those bonds of pain
So carelessly first chosen.
We must rejoin ourselves
To that principle called Truth
Which operates for Everyman,
Exists for the common good.

'Ye shall not surely die',
Prince Satan said.
Man, lacking all concern for facts
And puffed with his importance
Like some spoilt juvenile,
Grabbed at the Lie believing
He need not think or care
As he swaggered time away.
Thus did he find himself
Trapped in the Liar's Lair,
His quick death proving
That God indeed spoke Truth.

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