By this or any other - so named,
is the balancing of doubt.

Crafting the current the poem makes its way
through to grumble over the world's unending breakwater,

answer its own frequency as an echo describes the circle.

The mirror turning
becomes the way home.

The land that makes anonymous takes all;
hear the surface shift, feel the contours
swell in space, wind and sunlight.

Dreaming marks the way by its absence and dominates.

May I address you then, fearful 'other'
the terrible absence of your coming but never arriving,

what is it that beats at the wall of this reality?

Rocks, pebbles, mud wash through the sluice,
a sheep's fleece only catches grains off sunlight.

Through the break, a sort of friendly rustling,
four hooves loosen dry river scree
                        and upriver at the bend, a hawk circling,
admonishing the ordinary.

Always and forever, a zigzagging down the slope
and through the beech,
                        clothed sound, muffled dislodgment.

Near or farther off - the same holding pattern;
a theorem is at work (under orders) about to be delivered.

Patches of snow, plaster fallen from the sky's dome.

And the river is a vapour of the sky
(the minerals of the air brightening)
and the river is a shield of the sky.

This prayer I offer to the river God Acheloüs
within his shady palace of 'lava-rock and grey-lipped pumice'.

That same God who, disguised as a raging bull,
wrestled Hercules for possession of the beautiful girl
                        Deianira, and lost;

his horn ripped from his skull - later found
by river nymphs who made of it the Horn of Plenty,
                        an overflow of Autumn fruits.

Though occasionally angered to flood (witness this engorged
love-tale of a bad luck woman)

                        Acheloüs, a genial god at the best of times,
(his head scar he covered with reeds) was unharmed.

Hercules not so lucky at the hands of Deianira died.

                        Reborn as a God.


poet's biography ->