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Feast of the fantastic

Your heart

The doors open wide to a feast of the fantastic,
And the host, in his generosity, opens his hands, fingers dance.
An invitation to come, to join the table,
Which is wide and long, spread with the breads of hope.
Sometimes the music is modern, sometimes ancient,
But it is strong and regular, keeps good time.

This place is bigger than any kingdom,
It opens out, boundary-less, to everyone everywhere.
No sweatshop here. It doesn't matter how many come,
Or will come, and the skateboarders will always get a seat
At the banquet, where they will taste the wine and food
Learn to sing with the host and rejoice in his good.

It is a heart that has the history for art,
And so the ceilings will be skies of songs.


Your hands

If you couldn't speak, your fingers would,
Irresistible, I have seen them make a poem,
As they led the children to the centre,
When we were all betwitched and enlarged,
Dilated with the delicacy of the dance of the senses,
They are petitioners of grace and gravity, of beauty.

It takes fine-tuning to fiddle with the dial's antic,
To hear the muse and the crescendo to music,
To engraft the one that owns a body of oneness.
We watch in wonder at the way we gain access
Through the clarity, the charity into the realm that flows,
Where feeling flourishes and love just grows.

They dance with ten-point rhythm, they open skies,
And the songs that cascade are so wise.


Your eyes

Every time I see your tears,
I see the hurt of fears, the forgotten years,
But, I also see the colours of a jewel
That sparkles despite the power of the cruel.

Then, with the swelling, I feel the deep,
A deep, so deep, that calls us all to weep.
For we, like it or not, are bound one to one.
And, if not, there is but none.

As the globes of salt trickle down your cheek
The glow of your skin rises to its peak.
Suddenly, it is as if a weight
Had been lifted to an even greater height.

When we embrace and consecrate the glory
Then we can celebrate the dreaming in the story.


Your feet

And so we come to the extremities
Which are, in fact, a sure source of sensibilities,
Those feet that can walk on the hot sand,
In the rivers of ice and the snows in the high land.

It's the feet that leave the fact of grip,
The toe-binding footprints on the strip.
The earth-wit of footfall is the signpost to the way
Where we should follow day by day.

Footfall makes for footprints, small headstones
Of memory, of history, of ancestry, of time,
All now bursting with life in the present
With the poetry of sand-depth and soul-surety.

If only we determined to walk in those signs,
They would give us strength and love for the times,
But, and it is true toe to toe, we are too soft
To follow where the passion leads, to the cock-toft-loft.
What is so good, in the end, is that your feet
Are strong and sensitive, tough and sweet. 

Peter GebhardtPeter Gebhardt is a retired school principal and judge. His most recent book is Black and White Onyx: New and Selected Poems 1988-2011. 

Topic tags: new australian poems, Peter Gebhardt



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