14 Aug 2008

a rumour of trees

the morning whispered dry leaves. the bent back streets littered the city and i followed their curves winding this way and that. driving their flat, indecisive lengths from dawn's early kiss to day break. a broken branch journey that followed the tourniquet of the river in its elusive twists.who wrote the rules for this place i wonder? not the bureaucrats for sure, not with their synthetic, limited vision. not the architects of tumble and jumble.maybe, just maybe, this city has grown from the torn crumbs that have spilled from the mouths of the people who have built it. an organic fungus that has spread out from the dark knowledge of the bullshit fed to the meek and the poor during the times of monarchs and matriarchs. holes filled in with masonry after this and that war. dirty blood spots on the torn page of history.we had parted company in the early morning following a night of coitus without recrimination or need for words of warmth. a connection made by the vital need we both understood. moist the scented moments of night that drove us on through sleepless, sheet spilt hours. driven hard and slow and fast and sudden and soft with low murmurings.it brought to mind a moment i had seen years before when i was taking children around a zoo and we had spotted two otters mating. making love, making joyous, unconcerned, unhurried, oblivious to the human eyes, love.one of my charges, a small child of ten and with slight learning and speech problems had announced, as only a child with such a sweet and unbruised mind can, and in the loudest of voices, 'they are having sex'. and they were but in
such an intimate and loving way. he thrusting for all his worth before stopping as if to recover his
stamina and she, oh so sweetly and gently, patting and caressing his back.eyes half shut as if savouring each thrust. her forepaws patting encouragement. i wondered, if the gods were watching us, would they have drawn the same conclusions that i had upon seeing those otters? would they have seen how pain and loneliness can be shared for the briefest of times?the city drove me on over bridges and train tracks and out into the flat heart of estuary england. the grey, no mans land where grandsons of immigrants move to avoid the new wave of immigrants they curse and abuse for not being as english as them. the smell of the city faded with the dreams of night but the guilt followed like a spectre to haunt me. the faces of the beloved rushing to greet me with acrimonious fingers raised and pointing. marleyesque visions that rose on the tarmac heat haze. there are times when you can conjure false hopes from nightmare scenarios, when the mind has taken enough truth, enough solid honesty and draws another definition. i allowed this momentary illusion to cast its drowsy net and followed the watery sun.
seeing a huddle of trees i thought of the divine way nature has of producing clearly identifiable metaphors for us to decipher. there is an ornate beauty about forests, about woodlands. something prehistoric and timeless. dark at times and perhaps a little sinister but in truth is it not the singular design of trees, rather than their collective threat, that scares us? intimidates us? is a single tree not only an object of beauty but a thing of supreme isolation?
the car, with a mind of its own, followed the hedge constructed lanes past fields of rape and cottages of thatch. around bat blind corners that humped over hills and dove into shallow pools laying like a passing thought on the road.
somewhere near milton keynes rain began to fall only to prove another fact a fallacy. sunshine isn't the only way to spread a little light anymore than being in crowds of people is an answer to being lonely.

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