Sunday, June 26, 2011

Sunday Morning

It is this morning.
We sit across the table from each other
breakfast over
the coffee steaming in the china mugs
as you read from the magazine
and I work on the crossword puzzle
sections of the news paper spread everywhere.

You look up, smile at me
and lean across the table for a kiss,
happy for no reason but it is Sunday,
we have all day to do with as we choose.

You are so sure of me
I am afraid enough for both of us.
In my life I never imagined
a morning like this morning;
the bed unmade
me in this ragged robe
all my senses singing:
This is what we share with one another.
This is the place I keep my promises.

Jaimes Alsop

Time Past

The internet still surprises me. I went looking for some more of my old friend Jaimes Alsop's poems, as he doesn't appear to have collected them anywhere, and I found him writing on a board/forum about something I did all those decades ago!

"Years ago (late sixties) someone handed me a packet of Rizla cigarette papers (a popular brand in England). Inside was a folded cigarette paper on which was typed "Autumn Poem". When I unfolded the cigarette paper inside was the little slip that Rizla put in all the packets near the bottom as a warning the packet was getting low: "Only Five Leaves Left"

Thirty years later and I still smile over that one."

Only Five leaves left Rizla reminder
Of course, Nick Drake had also noticed that poetic phrase, and name his album Five Leaves Left.

When I returned to the UK (after a couple of years away) the little coloured slip popped up as I removed three cigarette papers. It read "Time to buy another packet" and I knew The Sixties were finally over.
Time to buy another packet

Friday, June 24, 2011

Something to do with visions

Jaimes in 1975 I had a good friend called Jaimes, in the mid-Sixties, who let me sleep on his sofa, inspired me with pranks and poetry, and made me laugh a lot.

It was the era of the singer/songwriter, and he was a poet, but he didn't make a living as a musician.
Later he went to the USA and a couple of years later, when I got my own adventure legs under me, I decided to drop in for coffee (in Palo Alto) without warning him I was on the way. He dealt with a hippie ghost turning up from a previous life really graciously, and again sheltered me until I got my second wind - then launched me out.

He just died a couple of days ago. We had made some internet contact in the last year or two, through his daughter.

I found this poem of his from 1969, in an old folder of writings...

Something to do with visions

It was something I had to tell you
Diane, it was all caught up with the morning
Something to do with visions

There were no visions today
I noticed particularly
There were no visions today, Diane
Perhaps they had all gone home

Today I was not deceived by your arteries
And though I searched your shoes and comb
I found no traces of gold
Even when I investigated my fingernails
There was no gold
Today love, you must have walked upon the ground

It was something to do with me
Today I was older than my generation
I refused to protect you from your virtue
There are too many, I said, too many already
in chains of flowers and April

They didn’t know about your perfume
They thought I was talking about seasons

It was something I had to tell you
I wrote it down so I wouldn’t forget
Something to do with visions
My eyes are rimmed with a fine and precious dust.
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