With stalked goggle eyes
They survey the terrain
A rich dessert of sweet veins
I am me!
I want you to do what I say
Finding no solace in sunlight
Or rain, or shining dew
Greedy as acid
As soon as they chomp Lettuceland
They want another
They batten on the earth
In sticky digestive marmalade
As she boils in her core.
I am not doll, but sometimes wish to be
Featherweight, a flying thing with tinted wings
A flowing dark dot in a minnowed brook
A tiny teacup full of lime green juice
Drink me, they say, eat me, I don’t.
I have a way of looking
Which is astonished bewilderment
A little sharp razor which is words
A dob of paint and a needle to stitch up
Any seams that pop
Sometimes my legs and arms are fearful
The joints pulled out so they dangle
Those are bits that no one sees
Other times I slip gracefully into bed
Wearing my butterfly pin and my silver wig
I am guessing you wish to love me
After a Fête Galante of chat ups?
But do it the way of a witch
Mind the buttons and cotter pins
My indifference to mortal things
Remember I am antique.
Look at a tree properly
Not even the whole conundrum, just one limb
Or the seed, even its body
Is only light streaks, immaterial
Just a green grey line hit by solar particles
Wood it may be, leaves, bark, tongue…
The best way is to forget all that
Remember, we are only peering
New born to shadow and shining
Christened and dying all at once
Just to see one thing
As it is
The eye burned by the ravening star.
Veronica Aldous all rights reserved 2018
The Black Earth of the Arawak.
The sun broke the sky into three pointed stones.
Eye stones, keep stones, earth stars, voices
Tall girls were washing the string from juicy leaves
To weave into baskets to crush the toxic sap
From a giant root.
We may be eaten by men or dogs he told them
The water glittered, and a pinkfaced monkey chattered
He traded for some iron to cut the Spaniards
The way they cut up the womenfolk, only worse
If there was a worse way, he would find it…
They were the wrong people, they were just a family
Eating their bread and praying to a paper saint
Before they were felled beneath the tools.
A double rainbow spilled over the spent volcano
The two-note bird shrilled in the wet undergrowth.
Now we are as the Caribs
Except we did not eat them
all rights reserved 2018
Alice and Pi
Pleasure is not formatted
It is clouds inside a builder’s van
Not inside but magically inserted
Via the ordinary glass
Holst plays a symphonic broadcast
To Venus, he is gone now
But he can still compose
Listen, he says –
Everything has a voice
I transmit acres of nebulae
Chesil beach is the wet sea
In my blood, tidally grading the stones
Smaller to large, as always
I am worn away, but saturated
As the horse drinking
From the deep sweet stream
All of it changes, is unchanging
Stranger, what are you?
I feel you streamed
Into me; you answer my questions
That is truly astonishing
Look into me again
I transform under your gaze.
Veronica Aldous 2018 all rights reserved
Painting by Veronica Aldous- copyright
Artwork by Veronica Aldous- stitch and stain on leaf dyed wool felt.
The Shadows of Oaks
I have spent 50 years
engaging oak trees in conversation
the answers come in the form of shadowplay
and at nightfall
certain peculiar moths.
Veronica Aldous 2017 all rights reserved
As steps of shadows ache, let all things fall
there is a pattern
but none within can make sense of it at all
so push or drift as silk or stone
will slide or crash within the chamber
exposing pain that lives deep in cuts
a bloodied sigma mirrored back
in the self replicating corridor.
Veronica Aldous all rights reserved 2017