L I t T e R

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Catherine Hales


this is how things are       buildings leaning
scattily in the wind       burnt at edges

discarded shoes littering the bloodstained ground
& vision dying out with a whimper at the van-

ishing point at the back of perspective       still
life        meaning strung like wires between opposite

poles       spasms between us who think we know        lost
in translation        what we see in the mirror is not

what we get        that structure is only bones after all
& a palette of ochres reds yellows blues        titanium white

the art of the detective

painting has the power to point the finger at what happened
       fernando botero

forensics will chivvy a better tale       but for now
weíre stuck with the evidence of our own eyes

investigating the tiniest details        trajectories
itís all indicative        you just canít trust        the how of the crime

but never the why        like microscoping single threads of a canvas
splashed with a random idea of colour        all our training

militates against stepping back to see the greater whole
the conditional aspect        the adjacent dreams        involving

less & less of anything we can find to reconstruct        the trick
is not to lose that while coming in close for certainty

near dangast

not moving but falling       where landscape vanishes into
myth       this point between        marshes & sea        tang

ternsí turning        diving        a wind that stings
to tears       frees the mind to roam        a tabula rasa

draw down the sky to cover and clothe us        second guess
a sailorís suit you said       a break in the clouds


spreepark treptow (accounting for)

inert terrors tinier than life       a few model
dinosaurs & nightmare fairground figures
abandoned when the owner absconded

left lying        nothing to be scared of now
(in these woods you donít need breadcrumbs to find the river)
itís all fenced in & padlocked        soon

itíll be just another building site        a palimpsest
the imaginationís profit & loss        & the licence of the eye
the ferris wheel jammed in the variable sky

Copyright © Catherine Hales, 2007