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David Selzer – Page 90 – Writer of Poetry, Screen Plays, Stage Plays & Fiction – page 90
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THE WRECK OF THE ROTHESAY CASTLE

A dirty night in the Menai Straits…

a paddle steamer on a sudden sandbank –

pounding itself, pounding itself, pounding…

seas silencing the hullabaloo.

 

For the last time, the lifeboat pulls for the shore.

Two lovers, roped to the mast, drown their joy.

 

All turned to chalk on the dark sea bed.

Far, far above was the muffled cry

of gulls, the cormorant’s swift shadow.

 

 

 

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THE POKER

An upper room, somewhere

in Cambridge, England, 1943.

 

Outside, a rainy night, the Kardomah closed,

long queues at the Alhambra

for Max Miller, the Cheeky Chappie.

 

 

 max-miller-3

 

 

Inside, a roaring fire and a pride of philosophers.

 

Wittgenstein:           The world is everything.

 

ludwig-wiittgenstein

 

 

Russell:                     Man is not a solitary animal.

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BESTIARY

Ram, The Aberdeen Bestiary

Ram, The Aberdeen Bestiary

 

                     

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                               i

 

A swan, standing, preening itself obliviously

in the nearside lane of the overpass,

diverts the chance commuters into

storytellers for the day.

 

                               ii

 

One morning, perched on a bird table, a kestrel

was tearing a head.

A pheasant, late in the afternoon, whirred from the terrace

and over the privet.

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BULKELEY HOTEL, BEAUMARIS, YNYS MÔN

At twilight from the hills across the Straits, a sudden

drift of smoke – then a fire’s deep orange eye blinked.

We talked of cruising the Nile; of moon rise and sun set,

of the narrow compass of the earth’s curve;

the river pilots’ open armed, hand-on-heart salaams;

and the stars rushing through the night.

 

Later and sleepless in the early hours,

I kept watch at the bedroom window.

The hotel sign lit a faded Union flag,

threadbare at its outer edges.

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EPIPHANIES

Citizens falter in the purposeful street.

Above the fumes of money, confusion,

from the leaden gaps of sky comes a murmuring,

a sigh like breathing, pulsing of blood.

Swans are flying on unhurried wing beats,

necks as prows towards horizons. Glinting

like new coins, pedestrians’ faces

turn skyward… The city smells of warm stone.

Sun illuminates the prison’s granite.

Thrust through the bars of a cell window

are a pair of hands, palms upward. Whatever

they have done,

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