A trick of the soil


Selected poems



Fire pit

When the white we burn

is each & every place ...


A whole lot of above,

a glimpse of before?


Nothing beneath us,

to catch the fall.



travel down

where dreams wake up

the middle, our underbelly

an unguarded carriage.


The gotten is smuggled,

visions found

as we iron in the dirt

below the truth

a blaze blackened —



of a last

functioning species,


following in the scent

on a rebound

from flesh.


In the wake

of our seated hangover


the view gets smaller

and we, the fade out.


The first man to arrive

diluted with our light


is drawing me on a leaf

or recording the past ...

— Ellen Shelley




A trick of the soil

There are those, who are living,

Aged a few minutes younger than the soil:

There are those who are loving

Aged a few hours younger than the soil:

Those who are lying

Aged a few days younger than the soil:

And those who are laughing

Aged a few months younger than the soil:

Some who are killing, some who are weeping,

Some who are birthing,

Some who are working,

Aged various years younger than the soil:

And the soil is to claim them for eternity,

And they too will be

Older than the living,

Who are filling the seconds with their life story.

— Francis Bede



The turn of a friendly path

There are semblances of him scattered

Around in old photos, postcards

Half finished love letters;

His excursions are of one whose path

Is that of a dirt road

Which ends on the edge of a dried lake;

His family hopes that

He might come back like

The rains in storms,

And fill the lives of those

To whom he matters most,

With his love,

His kinship,

Free from the drugs

The alcohol,

Free to yawn at their hold,

And caress the damage as though the Christ

And bind his soul

To Oblivion, to begin again.

— Francis Bede



Topic tags: poetry, Ellen Shelley, Francis Bede



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