Saturday, February 4, 2012

“The Meaningless Poetry of
Rain” © Mike Absalom January 15th

That was a faraway
place, off there, fifty years ago,
at Bobby’s Bar on
Franco’s Costa
squeezed between Barcelona
and the bare and
tragic hills that overlooked the ocean.

The valleys were
full of paths and the paths full of dust,
untrodden, and old
abandoned houses.
The trees stood
always motionless, like old people at a funeral.
They moved me
often enough
as I walked
through the scattered ruins they observed,
never knowing why
I felt so sad
or what might once
have happened there.

So very far away,
on the sharp edge of youth,
with childish
things put behind me by default
and the rest of
life, like a dark impenetrable thicket barring my path.
It is clear now
that I had defaulted somewhere along the way
and had not picked
up all the essential equipment I was to need
to finish my
journey in a satisfactory manner.
Unless, that is,
it was the journey that mattered,
and not even the
Devil cared where I ended up afterwards.

I learned my first
trade there,
practicing my
guitar by the terracotta fountain under the tangerine tree and beside what
turned out to be,
when it burst one
day into amazing Martian Invader Technicolor bloom,
a pomegranate
cruel, thorned and

This was a place I
had no need to know again,
although the
memories linger
like Saturday
night perfume during Sunday morning prayers.
I retained for
later use the pomegranate bush’s safe isolation of being, penetrated only by a
consciousness of lizards and locusts
and the
meaningless poetry of rain.

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