A Life . . .

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Photo by Chevanon Photography on Pexels.com

 

Life ahead you See

Was never just about Me

For you and I will Be

Ever and always ‘We’

 

 

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Let Today Be The One That Will Last

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‘Bright New Day’ – Watercolour:  ©  WHB  2013

TODAY

The past is a bygone world;
Tomorrow still does not exist. 
Life is about our today,
When thoughts of all else are dismissed. 

What’s happening now is what matters; 
Don’t let what has passed hold sway.
The future will care for itself,
What’s important is living today.

For today is our life in a nutshell,
So spend no more time in the past.
Let the future look after itself, 
Let today be the one that will last.

 

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JANUS 2018 – Two Sedoka

2 Katauta = 1 Sedoka

The Katauta is an unrhymed Japanese form consisting of 17 or 19 syllables. The poem is a three-lined poem with syllable counts of: 5/7/5 or 5/7/7.   . . .   A single katauta is considered incomplete, or a half-poem . . . a pair of katautas using the syllable count of 5,7,7 is called a sedoka.

The Sedoka, therefore, can be defined as – an unrhymed poem made up of two three-line katauta with the syllable count of: 5/7/7, 5/7/7.   A Sedoka, pair of katauta as a single poem, may address the same subject from differing perspectives. 

Source – adapted from:  Shadow Poetry

Continuing my occasional efforts at attempting different poetic forms I offer two Sedokas of my own composition, both based on the advent of a new year, with prospects for new beginnings . . . 

 JanusIn ancient Roman religion and myth, Janus is the god of beginnings, gates, transitions, time, duality, doorways, passages, and endings. He is usually depicted as having two faces, since he looks to the future and to the past.  (Wikipedia)

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JANUS 2018 – Two Sedoka

Yesterday has gone
Turn your face to the future
Let hope reign over regret

The future holds sway
Promises there are to keep
Let Love conquer dark despair

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Look to the future
The past is history now
But remember its lessons

For they tell the truth
That what tomorrow will bring
Is what yesterday forgot

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My Christmas Ghosts

MY CHRISTMAS GHOSTS

   … Three Christmas Senryu …

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They live on in dreams
Friends who once enriched my life
Ghosts of Christmas Past

 

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Ghosts of Christmas Now
Fill my days and haunt my nights
Bring both joy and fear

 

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Loves I’ll leave behind
Ghosts of Christmas Yet To Come
They are my future

holly

 

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NOTE:  Senryū is a Japanese form of short poetry, similar to haiku in construction: three lines with 17 syllables, usually arranged as 5/7/5.   Senryū tend to be about human foibles, while haiku tend to be about nature.   (Adapted from Wikipedia)

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‘Truth and the Past’ … Three Fibs

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Poets have experimented with poetic form for as long as poetry has existed.  One of the most recent exercises in poetic form utilises the mathematics of the Fibonacci sequence and was introduced in recent years by the American author, Gregory K. Pincus.    Such poems or verses are often termed ‘FIBS’.

What is a Fib?

‘ The Fibonacci poem is a poetry form based on the structure of the Fibonacci number sequence. For those unfamiliar with the Fibonacci Sequence, it is a mathematical sequence in which every figure is the sum of the two preceding it. Thus, you begin with 1 and the sequence follows as such: 1+1=2; then in turn 1+2=3; then 2+3=5; then 3+5=8 and so on. The poetry sequence therefore consists of lines of 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, and so on with each number representing the number of syllables or words that a writer places in each line of the poem. As a literary device, it is used as a formatted pattern in which one can offer meaning in any organized way, providing the number sequence remains the constancy of the form.   The subject of the Fibonacci poem has no restriction, but the difference between a good fib and a great fib is the poetic element that speaks to the reader.’   This description of the form is quoted from:  http://www.musepiepress.com/fibreview/

I give three of my own attempts at this poetic form below . . .

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When

At

The end

of our days

We review our past

Let us not wish to deny it

 

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Stay

Think

Resolve

To recount

In all honesty

Only what is valid and true

When at last we make the journey to meet our maker

 

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Speak,

Now,

To me,

my poet,

Of your love for me,

In melodious soothing words,

To nourish the feelings which I long to hear you say.

 

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The Man In The Iron Mask

maninmask-canterburyThis huge sculpture, with the name ‘Bulkhead’, was created in metal by Rick Kirby.  It first came to Canterbury as part of a sculpture festival called Blok.  The sculpture was so popular that Canterbury council bought it.  

At the time of my photograph, it stood outside Canterbury’s Marlowe Theatre, until the theatre was demolished in 2009.  It has recently been returned to the new theatre in The Friars, but now stands by the river in the theatre’s newly-created outdoor seating area.  

The theatre takes its name from the fact that Christopher Marlowe, (1564 – 1593), the Elizabethan playwright, poet and translator, also known as Kit Marlowe , was born in the city of Canterbury.

The sculpture, of course, references  Greek Drama’s ‘Mask Of Tragedy’, this being pertinent to Marlowe’s great tragic dramas.  In subsequently thinking of the sculpture purely as a mask of iron, it then suggested to me Alexander Dumas'(1802 – 1870)  fictionalised story of ‘THE MAN IN THE IRON MASK’.   This is Dumas’ version of the story of  the unidentified prisoner who, in the 17th Century was arrested, made to wear an iron mask, and subsequently imprisoned for 34 years.   As a nod to Dumas, if not to Marlowe, I have taken the liberty of inserting a ‘man’ into the eye of the Bulkhead sculpture  (see below).  

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What Might Have Been . . . THEN

 

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What Might Have Been . . . THEN

Did I ever kiss you
in those halcyon days of old?
did I ever hold you
in my arms
whisper
to your ear?
or say
I want you so?

It didn’t happen
then
did it?
It could have
but it didn’t
such a wasted moment
such a forfeited life

What I know now,
but didn’t
then
you were there
waiting for me
seeking a glimpse
of recognition
or even a nod
 to your very existence

What I feel now
was not an option
It was outside my ken
then
barely a glance away
no more than a word away
but a whole world away
from mine
or so I thought
thoughtlessly

I could have taken
that other path
the road not taken
into that parallel world
that alternative reality
the sliding door
into another future
but
I chose differently
unconsciously
I didn’t know
didn’t even consider

that there might be
that there was
an alternative
then

But In my ignorance
in my indifference
you left and
I demurred

For you
then
I know now
there was a pain
a hurt un-mended
unintended

So I departed
to a separate future
itself now discarded
this time
for you

So long ago
nothing
then
now
is everything

Oh if I had spoken
then
broken that ice
 to find that different future
 grasped at chance
and fused we two together
embarked
 on life’s unwavering path
with hope
that all that came to pass
would prove to be
life’s key
its answer to failure

But would that alternative
that re-positioned love
have lasted long
and still been fresh
and sunny
after a lifetime
together

Or would it
then
would it have palled
just been repeated
on another plane
and left us
where we are now
cold
dispassionate
and turning to another
for succour

Or
perhaps
are both lives
being lived right now
co-existing in their own space
along with all those other choices
 I did not make?

Uncertain
amidst uncertainty
there is a certainty

That
time pleases no one
history wins
and history is the truth
It has to be the truth
for us

when we ourselves
have lived it
however many histories there are

When we have loved
not loved
then
re-discovered love
we must
somewhere
have experienced
the truth
a life

which we can take
shared

Into the future

Perhaps this is it
now
so much better than
what happened

… Then

  #      #      #

But
I believe
at the time of their making
our choices
were the right ones
only later
in another life
did they become
 the wrong ones

Nothing is pre-ordained
that cannot be
circumvented
neither is anything
unequivocal
or absolute

So many possibilities
so many doors
to choose from
countless ‘what ifs’

Perhaps the order
in which we choose
matters not

Only the life
that is being lived now

Or … THEN

 #      #      #

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NOTES:
The lead-in illustration is by George Boyce  (geebee2007 / flickr.com)  is for Philip Pullman’s book ‘The Golden Compass’, the first of the ‘His Dark Materials’ trilogy, currently being prepared for filming by BBC TV.  The trilogy follows the story of two children, Lyra and Will, as they wander through a series of parallel universes.
Author’s note: I am aware that ‘Alternate Reality’ seems to be used more often than ‘Alternative Reality’, which I nevertheless think is logically the more correct way of describing this concept.