Wednesday, 17 February 2010

Poems by Martin Stannard

POEM (Looking out of the door I notice it's raining)

Looking out of the door I notice it's raining it's been raining
For as long as I can remember it was raining when I opened my eyes
The first time and then I closed them and then I opened them
Again on awakening and still it was raining. When I asked about it
My mother explained how the rain is God's tears and also those of
His son Jesus, and they're both very unhappy all the time because
Of what we do. It seemed to make sense, and I went to hide under
The umbrella I'd been given on arrival, resolved to do what I was
Told which was to keep my mouth shut in future for my own good.

NIGHT (I cannot write in the dark)

Today which is not the same day as that upon which I wrote
What you just read it's still raining and the sky is even darker than
The dark of yesterday. I didn't mention yesterday's darkness
But it was very. My mother maintains that the sky's darkness
Is a symbol and/or a metaphor or even sometimes an objective
Correlative of God's dismay and Jesus' disappointment in
Relation to what we do and I can see how she might make that
Connection since we often say someone has 'a dark look' when
They're unhappy with us though now I come to write that I'm not sure
I've ever heard anyone say it except in books nobody reads now.

I'm going to go out when I've written this chunk because I have to
Buy some supplies for me and the tribe since the store refuses to
Deliver any more after the incident with the dogs. I think the river
Will be flooded what with all this rain so I'll need to wear the boots
I bought in the city they're too big for me but it doesn't matter because
One day I'll be bigger than I am now and I will fit everything as
My mother has always promised. The rain is beating on the window
Like a thousand fingers drumming a rhythm on the glass. I'm quite
Pleased with that simile and will leave it here for us all to admire.


I've been out and I came back. I was right. The sea has broken through
The wall and there are shipwrecks everywhere and my mother says
Tonight there will be a ceremony in the forest to placate an obviously
Unhappy God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. I'm going to ask
Her what form this ceremony is to take and do I need to attend because
I'm not sure I want to go out again and the older I get day by day
The less certain I am of the believability if that's a word of a supreme
Being who cries on us all the time. I think a supreme being should be
Above all that and pull himself together and get on with his life
And not be shedding tears day in and day out over spilt milk.

She says I've got to go it's my duty and if I don't go willingly
She'll tie me to the truck and haul me there and so I'm going but
I'm not happy about it. At the store today I was talking with well
I won't tell you their name because you don't know them but we were
Talking and we all agreed that rain is almost certainly the result of
Some kind of chemical process up high in the sky and nothing to do
With God at all and one of us even suggested that 'God' is nothing
More than a dreamed up notion to keep us all quiet and looking
At the ground miserable as mud instead of realizing rain is actually
A quite remarkable phenomenon and I'm learning lots of new words
Too delusional befuddlement omniscient being among them as
I grow older and wiser day by day and the distance between
My mother and me increases if not in reality at least metaphorically.
I will be back soon; I have to go and have my tea.

INTERLUDE (My mother always says not to talk while I'm eating)

I had my tea and we went to the forest which was something of
An anti-climax there not being many people there and the ones who
Were there were no way the sharpest knives to come out of the drawer
And all the time the rain cascaded through the boughs of the trees
Drowning everything anyone said. I don't know why we had to
Go to the forest the same thing could have been done in a supermarket
Or a tavern and I still think if there's a God he was taking
No notice. It's still raining and I'm getting ready to go to bed
Where I'll read my magazines and then go to sleep and dream about
The girls who live in them who may or may not be real I don't care.

NIGHT (Again; how time flies etc.)

It's morning now and out the door it's raining it's been raining
For as long as I can remember it's raining every morning I open my eyes
And if I close them and open them again no matter how many times
Still it's raining but I'm beginning to not care especially since
There seems to be nothing I or anyone can do about it. I stay indoors
And learn words and do some thinking and every day even through
The gloom of weather I seem to see the way of things a little clearer.
Among my new words today are ambiguous inconsequential
Imperturbable. Mother looks in on me occasionally to shrug
As she mutters something under her breath about a brooding God.

Martin Stannard 2010

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