WHEN SEARCHING FOR WHO WE WILL BE, AFTERWARDS

 

What if a rose grew on the far side of the moon,

now, after, later?

Would we spread out time to explore the space
between the bloom and the branch?

Nature is a construct, much like the moon-
we don’t always consider it when we cut its roots

or ignore its connection to the current.

Remove ourselves from obstruction and regard potential
from this far side of confined distance

that plants consideration.

See how far a single petal can travel without our interaction.

We cannot go back to before. Select assimilate

instead of annihilate.

There is a rose now, growing on the far side of the moon
and it didn’t need our manhandling to get there.

  

All words and photographs by Damien B Donnelly

THE BIRDSONG RECALLS WHAT ONCE HUNG UPON THE HAWTHORN

 

Last month,
in the first breath of this coming season
of the sun’s light,
you crept in through the stillness
of the solitude that the birds had begun
to sing of
and spread out across the swaying branches
as we foraged for distractions beneath.
I climbed you, on occasion,
to release my feet
from the whispers that trembled
along the surface of the earth’s floor,
spiralling out
like panicked weeds whose roots
were as invisible as the dust
we cannot contain.
You’ve since fallen from sight, white tears
that only the birds recall in an evening song
that stirs the stillness
while we still hang to an invisible weight,
waiting to be told we can safely
let go.

   

All words and photographs by Damien B. Donnelly

SLOW HUM

 

Slow hum.
Morning beckons-
delicate dance of daisies,
baby bunny in back garden
thinking it’s his whole world,
even the breeze is bouncy.
Breath better than before.
Slow hum
of day unfolding,
footsteps on sidewalks,
sights on slow lanes, softly humming.
Even runners head towards hedges now-
hedge funds thrown to the ditch-
see the bunny bouncing
far from the banks.
Slow hum,
songs from tall trees
in place of traffic, alarms, sirens.
A hushed hum dedicated to the lost light-
birds sing of wings now rising,
nests have grown cold
even under all this sunlight.
Some have flown, others simply slowed,
missing the integration under the hallow hum
of this softly slung isolation.
Slow hum.

  

All words and photographs by Damien B. Donnelly

THE PRICE OF BEING WILD

 

Sometimes morning breaks
before the hold has found the frost.

We wake dizzy-
flung into field where dawn’s breath
corners all that has been fearless
but will soon fall to fragile-

breath becomes touch becomes dew becomes done

running down the blade of grass regardless
of how much it will cut.

Sometimes morning breaks
and I am off already, running

through the long grass, twisting around all that lies uncertain

I feel the blades stab skin
that has just been cradled.

Buds of blood come to cloth
like colour cast into cotton fields,
in this early light of twists and truths
they look like roses but come close

and see how quickly they slip down the side of each blade.

   

All words by Damien B Donnelly.

 

Photograph from the wonderful Liz Cowburn at https://exploringcolour.wordpress.com/

SOMETIMES ITS DANGEROUS TO CONSIDER HOW TO BREATHE

 

There are clear patches in the sacred soil
at the far end of the side garden where life
is expected to return. We planted it last week.

There are clear patches in the soft sky
behind clever clouds that carry the condensation
I covet for those bald patches in the tilled soil
where there will be grass. We planted it last week.

There are sometimes clear patches in these caged ribs
that house the lungs that shoot me with shock waves
at irregular intervals when I fall too concerned
with how to breathe. I panicked last week.

Or when I’m too forgetful to distract myself
with painting the panic into poetry at the far end
of the side garden with its selected soil all curious
for the cunning clouds to carry forth its condensation
across that sweet sky. I planned this last week.

There’s a peace when I potter beyond the panic.
I know this. I planted it last week in my head
when I sowed the seeds that will soon be grass.
I planted them both, deep inside.

   

All words and photographs by Damien B Donnelly

WHEN NATURE HEARD ME AND I FOUND HIM

 

Husky voice cribs my troubling thought.

I turn with fear hard on heel at the far end
of an ancient lane.

I borrowed these footsteps, I reply
to the open side of a ploughed field where wires allow
random thoughts to teleport across the sky.

This is not your path. This was the thought in my head
this voice had entered and uncovered and stolen.

Stolen? It asked.

You’re right, I continued, I forgot your presence
in too many cites of crushing television cables. This is not my path-
it is ours to share.

I remember now, can see how truth befalls in the darkness
these recent weeks of stillness seem to be resetting
an imbalance.

Husky voice returns to a tweet, but this time
it is a tweet that is sung in the trees.

   

All words and photographs by Damien B Donnelly

BIRD SONG

 

I stroll in soft sundown across the cushioned grass,
the earth a pillow I never stopped to consider,
I consider going in, inside to where the light looks neat
and named but a bird calls from a branch I cannot see,
sight comes in second after his song- soft, slow
and cycling back on itself like time, tide and your touch,
at times. Time was never our lover until it left us,
until we saw how quickly we aged in its agonising absence.

The night holds less time, with less light to cast shadow over,
with less sight to see the hands surge around the circle.
I move in circles around this garden of cushioned grass
while the moon comes out to feed, we eat what we can,
sleep when we must, the birds sing songs and only when lost
do we permit ourselves to stop and ask of the meaning.

   

All words and photographs by Damien B Donnelly

FINDING THE RIGHT COLOUR TO PAINT HOPE

 

Silly things
sabotaged for the case of creativity-
barren bark
becomes blank canvas
becomes blue
becomes oceanic
becomes bewitching monster of humour
and not hurt.

This is the crisis
of clearing out,
not shelving all that will come to know stale,
but for shedding.
Sheds are no longer for the simplicity of storage
but the new distributers
of distraction.

This is no hoax,
no harm, no hostage
but a painting of honour, perhaps
for all that’s been felled-
for all that we’ve cut down
and for all the rest-
that’s been taken from us

in these days
where we’ve slipped from being held
to a slim holding of hope,
to painting bare bark in the back garden
in order to smile. 

  

All words and photographs by Damien B. Donnelly

BRUSHING IT AWAY

 

Blue sky growing old,
sun sets into dusty pinks-
a hark for tomorrow

for today cannot be harboured any longer.

In this slow field
surrounded still by stilled life,
still the trees grow,

even daisies have returned after the mower’s menace
last Monday.

Single crow comes
to gather seeds
from once shadowed sections

of the garden I have only now revealed to the light.

Evening’s air is kissed
with today’s stagnation
but the sea is sweeping the shore

at the far end of the near lane where that dog barks next to buttery bush
that cannot concede its connection to the coconut.

And there, on the rock
once integral to the land,
I picture a mermaid, sitting,

combing the tide through her auburn hair in the hope that the current
can wash away the chaos

still carrying on
beneath the dusty pinks
of this ageing sky.

   

All words and photographs by Damien B Donnelly