John Gimblett: Two Poems
A Storm | Hwyl
I revealed in me pockets of
previous substance, watched what was
hidden within become open, conjunct.
And merged, tripped fitfully, in a
light sleep, with the sand-scuffling
mumbles of surf re-arranging
pebbles, soft rockets of ocean.
At a station, a railway in Gujarat,
leant on a ballustrade stone grey,
flashed with an ornamental wondering
of dusk. Stood at the end of a warm
day, fussing with bent ideas of
unworkable plans, hands flat on the
And someone, a man, stood beside me,
began worshipping the sun, let water he'd
spun from a bottle drip through his palms
as libation to sunset.
I watch this dribbling of liquid tinged
with a god's eye orange every day
in imaginings; daydreams of ochre
and other rays, mild thoughts melting me
And six, eight egrets slow as a new moon
burning turn on a grey cloud, fold in a
flash of hands, tumble, like sand under surf.
I appoint my day as this worrisome, prat-
falling minder; it pricks me, succombs to
all manner of unkindly kicks, ticks time
like it's ended and ended and ended.
Everything I apply to ideas I slash
in tired frenzy; atoms buzz with a dull
tickle yet fumble like bears, dash
And what skin accompanies me,
makes an old coat older, trails me.
Puts me to trial: I stood at a full moon
in autumn once, while horns played
above me. The new moon now brings
a fierce storm; I'll never be peaceful.
I believe that I am
banded by a dusk stripe,
magnificent, magnetic, pulling me
every quark of meeastwards.
It lies, the iron Kundalini,
coiled about me like a reminding
strip of bell. Circumstances dictate
I must ignore the note as it
sounds, must remain unsure-
footed to Wales. But still, in its
ignorance, it draws me, forcefully.
This stripe, almost ochre when
seen by a level spear of Indian summer
sunlight, has wishes and needs;
I have bowed low before gold
statues, walked butter-waxed floors
to expose the skin beneath
skin. On waking, often I fight
for any breath, so constricting
is this metal. And when, knowing
I am returning to the place
which summons me, I dream in
a beautiful colour, as far from
iron as are birds.
Born in 1960, in Wales, UK, Gimblett began writing poetry at 15. He has travelled extensively, especially in Asia and S.E.Asia, and published poetry, fiction, and essays/reviews widely. His publications include Mister John (Stride), Shadows & Fireflies (with Rupert Loydell, Stride), Water (Making Waves), Spokes of the Wheel (Eigth Apparition), and Selected Poems (2001, Torona Press).