I’ve told you my secrets,
now tell me your lies;
how you can’t let me go
and you don’t want to try;
though you’ve loosened my teeth
and busted my jaw,
you love me completely,
much more than before;
and now that you’ve beaten
my face blue and black,
how grateful you’ll be
if I’ll just take you back.
Tell me you’re sorry,
you just lost control;
you never intended
to hurt me at all.
Then bring me a cuppa
and kneel by my chair;
beg my forgiveness,
and brush back my hair.
Adore me, amour me,
and make a great fuss;
then tell me a story,
that glorifies ‘us’.
In chill November, stoutly, you and I,
bent-backed and booted, turned into the wind.
Sinking in the slow, red mud, we walked;
I tracked your giant steps;
heard in their clink and tumbling crush,
the singing of the stones;
saw rocks like teeth in the sea’s stark mouth
slow drawn by time’s far edge;
and cockle shells, bleached pale
as death, spill secrets in dark sands.
But then we found our progress barred:
across some river’s tiny roar,
you taught me how the faulted earth
might fall in stern and folded crags
and how it still might quake and split
to break the breaking, bounded shore.
There tigers prowled, their bloodstone eyes
as abstract as their welted stripes,
and monsters moved among the stones,
stirred up the bones of the tasty dead.
And so we crossed the Alps to find
a land of snakes and stars;
a single tree, still rooted,
kept its vigil by the shore.
To Carne Brea
Old Man, this morning that feels like evening
you wear your troubles lightly enough.
Through the silent hours when the snow still fell
on the long, slow hunch of your back
your spare north shoulder shrugged it off
as you hunkered down close against the wind.
Now, at noon, you are here and there dusted,
neither wholly of this earth nor of the sky.
How your bare bones tremble where the crystal air
whistles through your boulders and stones.
Old Man Carne, though you creak and groan,
tomorrow is all there is. Sideways on
to winter’s brunt, your May-time spirit endures.
By Abi Wyatt
Abi Wyatt writes for her life in the shadow of Carne Brea near Redruth. Formerly a teacher, she was paroled in 2004 and now writes poetry and short fiction as well as being the ‘house’ reviewer for Palores Press. She has been published in a number of magazines and e zines including Words with JAM, One Million Stories and ‘Poetry Cornwall’. Her poetry collection ‘Moths in a Jar’ became available in November, 2010.