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How to wrestle an angel

Love's Anchor

We squint through time's veil. You bring water to wounds.
Stumbling through my days you are a light for my feet.
Light and life are intertwined in caress and lavish, restoring kiss.
Faced with languid lack of hues we eschew shadows' shade.
Dank recess of human psyche gains perspective, shape, in your kindly glow.
No Nightingale, blood lies not on form; yet carer you are.

Heart's guard and guide, lover, prosecutor, confidante,
you traverse our orbit; your lamp reveals paths.
At dawn, dusk, or midday, as with Aesop or Diogenes,
you recount and weigh fables, dismissing foolishness and mistruths.
In candles' glow you radiate. That same light gleams from
sunkissed glacial eyes, twinkling at this absurd manchild.

Facing faults in love's candid glare we dwell unshaken. Bound. Here.
Fidelity's tangential weave preserves where discord undoes; lets fly and fall.
With visages unclouded, sans mirage of allure or ease, we bathe
in luminescent peace. Coupled in clarity, ignited
in the little death: making light of life.
Love's anchor holds true. Pray light shines ever still.

Barry Gittins


How to wrestle an angel

Clutching is advised; hold him tight as an idea,
well-loved and convenient. Wriggling will occur,
and it is imperative that the wings be kept from play.
What ring could hold an angel, should he unfold,
flex and soar? No ropes will ever net him.
He will reach out with as many arms
as Kali, as many voices as there are prophets,
hoping to flick slow minds into new holds.
Kicking him carries its own dangers too:
should the crusciate hold, there's the femur,
and the merest touch of a finger can mean trouble,
when we're talking of an artful angel dodger.

Imagine pinning down the Aurora Australis;
a butterfly of light, or holding a buttered pig.
A pig that whispers music, and in whose myriad
hues one hears music, whose breath, in your face,
is just more of the same. The angel will improvise,
finding the right riff to loosen your gluey grip.
First sax, then double bass, or even an oud.
May I suggest earplugs be inserted,
when the first notes of liquid jazz
drip into your ears from above?
Don't wait too long, like Hamlet's dad,
although that was poison, and this is ecstasy.

Some find it off-putting, to paw the naked flesh
of the celestial, as if spirit and body should never mix.
But there are precedents. Besides, your will, your mind,
can only be expressed through holds and throws,
so why should a sumo seraph be any different?
Try a Cobra Clutch Bulldog; an Elevated Gutbuster;
Wheelbarrow Driver; Gorilla Press Slam; a Frankensteiner.
There's always the Alley Oop, where you hoist him,
(the opponent) on your shoulders. But be aware
of the possibility of take-off. When your liftee
is an angel, you may find yourself Bellerophon
on Pegasus, but reversed. Who will be riding whom?

In the end, as you scent the music, as you
clench beauty like a grim nutcracker,
as you fly above cities like Faust on steroids,
as you feel the pounding of your own heart
merge with the oddly syncopated rhythm
of the wing-back, you may find an idea
insinuate itself like a finger into an eye ...
Why not surrender? Lose yourself in faith-flutter.
Ask yourself if this is a simple lack of oxygen,
or an excess of same, brought on by holy wind?
Is it the pinching of your nose, this sudden gnostic glee?
Wrestling, while divine, may have its limitations.

You may throw in your towel, a sudden sweaty feather.

P. S. Cottier

Barry GittinsBarry Gittins is a Melbourne writer. 

P. S. CottierP.S. Cottier's new book of poems The Cancellation of Clouds has just been published by Ginninderra Press. She blogs at pscottier.com 

Topic tags: new australian poems, Barry Gittins, P. S. Cottier, Valentines Day



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