The Rope

All these strings of time 
Taut, tight, growing into rope
Can unsplice, unwind, unstrand
Flake away to fibres in the hand.
A single filament is
A minutiae of hours 
Tying the infinitesimal
Winding a life.
For this here this now this
Real time, this tiny second ticking
Is life is gone was here was yours.
Our twistings are
Obscurity in motion
That ensures 
All that went before
Is mere dream realm
A shifting of weight 
Displaced illusion. 
Those colours woven into
The tapestries of mind
Are slung 
Onto his vast stone floor -
Brightening his vault 
They glow through that hollow
Space and all that goes before
Becomes an unkind void
An eternity 
Of potential cold
As yet unfilled,
Brimming with possibility, 
Its very emptiness is
Pregnant with frost.  
Life, true life is
The touch of skin
To be all compassion
To foil a cold collusion: 
The briefest grazing
Of one strand with the next
Is the immediate lock
And release
That renders all else effete.
It is heat blazing out 
Into the dark that makes
The one strong beam
The pure shaft of light
Piercing the human heart - it is
That rope which lasts, the
Accumulation of strings
And windings is
The lifeline
By which we climb
To reach and touch god in
Each other:
The measure of our lives.
Our ropes must co-operate
A stretching net 
To catch us when we fall.
Collected Works
Return to Collections all
next poem