Skip to main content

Poem by David Caddy

Eyewear is glad to welcome David Caddy (pictured) this week. He lives and writes in rural Dorset. Founder of the East Street Poets in 1985, Caddy was director of the well-known Wessex Poetry Festival from 1995-2001. He is the editor of the literary journal Tears in the Fence, which publishes good poetry from around the world, and is open to a variety of poetic viewpoints. I recommend it as a place to send work, and also a place to find work.

Caddy presents the monthly Internet radio programme, So Here We Are: Poetic Letters From England. His latest books are London: City of Words, a literary companion from BlueIsland (2006) and The Willy Poems (Clamp Down Press 2004). He regularly reviews for the Use of English magazine and Terrible Work online magazine. His next book, Man In Black, is out from Penned In The Margins this November. I look forward to reading it.



Shuffling The Icons Shaking The Trees


1
Black is this year’s white and light born
yonder to appear as beyond nature,
the head shakes to see the make-over
the old marks, the winkling out and infill.

Willow and alder wild-eyed from neglect
by watery sensations and psychic home
with preLatinate logic in our clothes
in this parade of nettles and overkill.

Sticky with sap, smell of quince,
bloodsucker head spouts, daintiness flies
into an inferno of electrical dependency.
Dim groups disassemble looking for eyes to see.


2
Oak is ancient book and index.
Spin and governance barely show
such splits and coves and touts
that crackle with stunts and fire.

A world to go out into to become
without and within hearing
without mediating the immediate
holding it all inside.

Curiously hidden behind shadow
strident tightly wrought words
replete with intent to awake
into recognition and mission.


3
Shuffling the Tarot, they hold,
fold, entice with letter and face
knowing that escape is no escape
not this day not this time.

The operation’s a gentle gnawing
on the chain, a bone licking tendency
to follow a prescribed order
and gain some respite from movement.

When young he copies out
his Donne from memory, muttering
in private disputation, wonder
of the addressee, boldness of argument.


4
On Sundays we visit the church of poetry
not through habit, through pressure, want.
New neighbours block off martins nests
and gunmen range to hunt in rovers.

About a doing, a making and a making do.
Bring up from the dark those amputated
those dormant, smoking fields and scrags.
Bring up from the dark those nameless people.

I am speaking of a ghost of a form
of expectation, the thought of thought
that drives legs and arms and eyes
to respect and ask for a journalist.


5
Those that know the ruin of empire
the moral core stretched to recoil,
farm handouts on nil return
slope management shot through.

Slept, crept, kept, wept, under attack.
Water supplies dip to unholy holiness
map, plaque, flak, crack.
Sometimes the threat is real.

Silence and binary logic wails
with disinformation, innocence.
The near homeless squint and mumble,
admissible as flint and lock.


6
With enough tension to fuse and decompose
to partially revitalise the chemically blown
from Farnham, effectively repopulated,
to Stickland, well-heeled and footloose

to the old-fashioned old cold table top
wood bare for lurch of calcium
Davy’s kindling deoxidised, sway of sulphur,
isolate of vitamin D, crazy, genuine.

More rackets to drug the market focus
the ostensible tap, tap of Tesco,
plight of village poorly sourced
craving to decode silence, bussed to charity.


7
The ear takes soundings beyond
masters of grammar and taxonomies
each scented petal has a name
that I bestow and cultivate around you.

Each balm and bane between us
lies to afford a presentation, a show,
a moment that is ours alone
thirsting to find new home.

Matter comes alight out of measure
our immortality’s a space and shadow
a quiet shuddering on earth’s face
the light is of light, I know.


8
Coda: Lady Jane Davy


Jane was as much under uterine dominion
to compose, recompose fluoric acid gas
as is graceful and pleasing
whether oxygenated, intoxicated or berated.

The first ever to fall victim to algebra
ascertain with greater precision
the nature of acidity in relations
and be geometrically led from virtue.

That combination of associate ignition
not yet a breach but a positive expansion
lit fuse after fuse far beyond
the string and glue of bound leaves.


poem by David Caddy
3 comments

Popular posts from this blog

AMERICA PSYCHO

According to the latest CBS, ABC, etc, polls, Clinton is still likely to beat Trump - by percentile odds of 66% to 33% and change. But the current popular vote is much closer, probably tied with the error of margin, around 44% each. Trump has to win more key battleground states to win, and may not - but he is ahead in Florida...

We will all know, in a week, whether we live in a world gone madder, or just relatively mad.

While it seems likely calmer heads will prevail, the recent Brexit win shows that polls can mislead, especially when one of the options is considered a bit embarrassing, rude or even racist - and Trump qualifies for these, at least.

If 42-45% of Americans admit they would vote for Trump, what does that say about the ones not so vocal? For surely, they must be there, as well. Some of the undecided will slide, and more likely they will slide to the wilder and more exciting fringe candidate. As may the libertarians.

Eyewear predicts that Trump will just about manage to win th…

DANGER, MAN

Like a crazed killer clown, whether we are thrilled, horrified, shocked, or angered (or all of these) by Donald Trump, we cannot claim to be rid of him just yet. He bestrides the world stage like a silverback gorilla (according to one British thug), or a bad analogy, but he is there, a figure, no longer of fun, but grave concern.

There has long been a history of misogynistic behaviour in American gangster culture - one thinks of the grapefruit in the face in The Public Enemy, or Sinatra throwing a woman out of his hotel room and later commenting he didn't realise there was a pool below to break her fall, or the polluted womb in Pacino'sScarface... and of course, some gangsta rap is also sexist.  American culture has a difficult way with handling the combined aspects of male power, and male privilege, that, especially in heteronormative capitalist enclaves, where money/pussy both become grabbable, reified objects and objectives (The Wolf of Wall Street for instance), an ugly fus…

OSCAR SMOSHCAR

The Oscars - Academy Awards officially - were once huge cultural events - in 1975, Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr, Shirley MacLaineandBob Hope co-hosted, for example - and Best Picture noms included The Conversation and Chinatown. Godfather Part 2 won. Last two years, movies titled Birdman and Spotlight won, and the hosts and those films are retrospectively minor, trifling. This year, some important, resonant films are up for consideration - including Hidden Figures and Moonlight, two favourites of this blog. Viola Davis and Denzel Washington will hopefully win for their sterling performances in Fences. However, La La Land - the most superficial and empty Best Picture contender since Gigi in 1959 (which beat Vertigo) - could smite all comers, and render this year's awards historically trivial, even idiotic.

The Oscars often opt for safe, optimistic films, or safe, pessimistic films, that are usually about white men (less often, white women) finding their path to doing the right thin…