‘The Mystic Writing-Pad’

In a book the lights
of day and love
gave me, life
writes itself easily on
the clear line of commerce:
someone falls
as simple as gravity,
another climbs
into strange, blue
emptiness.

Between its lines,
the mind’s silence, fires
light night’s empty dome,
and all my whisperers come
to warm their hands
and snigger.

We do not know
whether darkness there
or here, a sky
of mind or night,
protects us …

Only, the sun rises
when that sky
has washed us
of our daily fear;
and real, then,
in a lion’s mouth
we wake, the air
is clean and ripe
for breaking with
the smell of oranges
and burning bread.

The title and the poem refer to S. Freud’s ‘A note upon the mystic writing pad’ (1925). This poem was originally published in Fine Line, 1988.