New colours

A part of me wants to understand a new colour,
To wake up and stretch my mind
And suddenly see things I couldn’t before.
Tetrachromats can do it, can’t they?
So I’m thinking it’s physics,
Like the spatial dimensions of the world,
I need to use the spectrum I already own
And add something else to it,
To turn a point into a line into a plane.
But I don’t have that special fourth cone,
So I suppose I’d have to improvise.
Maybe I can just repurpose another sense.
I can make a new shade out of colour and feeling,
Like the specific kind of blue of sadness,
Or that particular combination of purple and yellow
That I see streaked in Euston Square
That somehow always reminds me
Of the dancing butterflies in the singing box
I always played with as a baby,
Probably because both were so polished and shiny.
Or maybe that twist of orange and green
Of porous artificial flowers
That make such a racket when you flick them.
It’s annoying.
Because I realize all of these
Are not in any way new colours,
They are perfectly old, perceivable colours
Packed together with specific memories.
So the rest of me is not concerned about novelty,
But about how poorly we can handle the rest,
How you can’t quite capture sun in a photo
Or mix your paints to match the shadow,
Or even draw that shine with your words.
I guess I was wrong. You can’t make new colours
Out of colours streaked with circumstance,
But you can certainly make new memories.
And the best part of memories
Is being able to take them out of their box
And run your fingers over them,
Checking that they’re still what your remember,
And perhaps share them with someone.
They do no good if they’re trapped
Inside your mind, in a fuzzy state of semi-existence.
So I guess what I should really want
Is to properly understand my old colours instead.

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I just wanted to tell you

I just wanted to tell you

That I could only whisper to you

How impossible it would be to say to you

All the things that I feel like shouting.

I’m alternating between a maddening need

To bare my soul in front of your eyes

And let you caress and soothe my past,

And an overwhelming desire to hide it,

To pretend the ugly scars out of existence

So you may never have the opportunity

To think any less of me for them.

I just wanted to tell you

That I don’t really trust myself to speak

And I need your silence to be understanding,

But I want you to coax the words out of me

Because they’re cutting my tongue to pieces

In their restlessness to reach you.

I just wanted to tell you

That I love you, and let the deluge

Of the past and present and future

Choose to throw themselves off my lips

When I read the same answer in your eyes.

The deepest peace

Breathe in and close your eyes.

Listen to the silence and breathe out.

Breathe in, counting the heartbeats,

Feeling the way life pumps rhythmically,

And vibrate with it. Breathe out.

Breathe in. Open up your thoughts.

It’s time to understand who you are,

And who you are also comprises

What peace may mean to you.

It’s not always the same thing to all.

For some it’s unconditional acceptance,

So let your past flow through you, see it,

But don’t try to catch any of it –

Just let it fall where it may,

And love the unique patterns that it made.

For some it’s knowledge, understanding,

So grab your finest sieve and go,

Pull away and apart and together

Everything you can get your hands on,

And try to discover your inner laws,

Your force and gravity and center.

Now open your eyes and look around,

And do the very same thing with the world,

Find your place in any way you like,

Just remember that it’s about the process

Not about the end result.

Peace is the journey in spite

Of the destination. It’s the one thing

That makes a difference to you – you.

Breathe out.

To walk this Earth

To walk this Earth,

No mountain needs moving

And no sea parted.

They’re formidable obstacles

And we have not such skills.

But why would we need them

When we can do

Things so much better.

We can make the mountain

Disappear completely,

Turn it into

The gentlest slope,

And change the ocean into

The calmest lake.

To walk this Earth,

No obstacle needs removing,

But they need understanding

And to be respected

For what they are.

So when you see water,

You swim or build a bridge.

When you see inclines,

You learn to go uphill.

When you see drops,

You either go down or around.

It’s like riding a horse –

You go with the movement.

So to walk this Earth,

You only need to follow

The path that

You were given already.

Only joking

Words spoken at the limit between joke and truth,
So many things that can be told in jest.
Maybe I go too often for that particular excuse,
The fast, convenient defence of ‘I’m joking’.
But don’t judge me. I’m really not lying
Because, you see, all the truths I have to say
Are too heavy to carry around all the time
So I make them buoyant and light with a twist,
And shed my expectations of them away.
But don’t misunderstand. Every single word
That leaves my lips has been considered,
And even the most ridiculous proposals
Have a clearly-defined seed of pure truth.
It’s so much easier to say the things you need
When only a slight inflection of your voice
Makes sure that no one ever believes
Or comes to poke holes to your realities.
But never take that bet with me, love,
I will stand behind each and every one of my words
Because underneath that convenient facade
I mean everything I’ve ever joked about.

Xenophiles

Spin the globe and let’s see where we start
I’m eager to see, to hear, to learn.
Show me snow-capped mountains
Off the walls of hidden towers,
Help me climb the ancient trees
Whose flavours I never encountered,
Clad in clothes I never touched,
My belly full of flavours
I never knew could be cooked.
Teach me the languages of the world,
Of the past, present and future,
So many of them that I learn instead
To understand the language of silence,
Of the breaths and heartbeats
That hide between the lyrical sounds.
Bring me down to the meadows and rivers,
Let me kneel in front of the gods
Whose names history itself forgot
And laugh in the face of their judgments,
Hidden beneath the armour of cultures
That long predate their creation.
Lay me down on the grass, on the stone,
On the rubbery, broken streets of the world,
And let me learn in the depths of your eyes
The name and position of new constellations.
Yes. Show me so much the Heavens above
And the Hells below give up chasing after,
Until we know all of this world and,
Still hungry, always hungry, we sneak
Through the cracks of reality,
Like all writer, all readers before us,
Go savour and bask in new images,
New sounds, new feels, new tastes,
And then go create some more.
Lifetimes are never enough to satisfy
A love of foreign as deep as ours.

Self-ful

You are not selfish.
It is not selfish to know what you think,
What you want and how to achieve it
And then act accordingly.
It is not selfish to choose yourself
Over what people want from you, of you,
Not selfish to respect yourself enough
To use the only life you’ll ever be given
To make peace for yourself.

You are not selfless.
It is not selfless to know what you think,
What you believe and how to stand by it
And then act accordingly.
It is not selfless to help others
If that is the standard you hold yourself to,
Not selfless to respect yourself enough
To use the only life you’ll ever be given
To turn your life meaningful.

You are self-ful.
You are your self and aware of it
Irrespective of the world around you.
You are the colours you paint yourself,
Choose the pigments that go into you
And the lines that are drawn out of you,
Not mindlessly soak whatever comes your way.
You are a calm eye looking inward,
Around which rages a chaotic storm.
You are an unchanged transition,
Self-determined, self-defined.
It’s an impossible concept for weaker people
So they try to label you in pitiful confusion,
Not comprehending how you can be
Both and neither, everything and nothing.
Not that you care.
You are too full of self
To need anyone else’s opinion.