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last update: 19th Feb20



non-attachment-theory                      mourning the wild glory


Montana: 15th September                      Listening to moss



the thing about moss
      apart from its greenness
                                                    the low winter sun warmed our faces
                                                    as we stepped over fallen branches
is that it has no roots, only
                                                    in the forest, newly green-warmed
                                                    by the moss and green rushes
(single cell organs
      slim as hair or thread)
                                                    among the rust-grey leaves the colour
                                                    of roe deer, muntjacs
that nestle beneath
      the leaf-rows or spirals
                                                    our hands on the moss, so yielding, so wet
                                                    so flamboyant and bright
anchoring them
      to tree or rock, absorbing
                                                    still fresh – after 540 million years –
                                                    to the taste of this dewy air
and carrying water slow
      along their filaments

Kay Syrad

published in Fenland Reed No. 7, 2018

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mourning the wild glory          

turn your palm  to face you
and move your wrist
in slow circles  to the left
to know how tenderly
how imperceptibly the tendrils
wreathe  their light-host
and  when  you know this
vow   pledge
unceasing  vigilance

                     Kay Syrad

                     Published in Invasive, Clare Whistler et al, Elephant Press, 2019

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Montana: 15th September

Third day in Small Town, Montana:
            one flat road through Ponderosa pines
            cabins, trailers, long-beard bikers
                                      hotel, motel, casino
            Make America Great Again Trump Fundraiser tonight
            two grizzly bears stuffed and mounted.
            Yesterday, at dusk, I disturbed
            a Great Blue Heron
                        drawing reluctantly from the creek
                        an awkward rise, legs unfolding,
                        its grace yet present in the sleek neck
                        and slow effort
            and I supposed, in wild nature, there could be no hurrying
                        no mistakes, no greed or unkindness
                        no taking for taking’s sake
                        no covenant-decreed sacrifice of others.
            Then this afternoon I bought a potato-masher
            at the Variety Store,
                        the shopkeeper’s mother
            was from Leeds, England, she said
                        and there are too many I-ranians
                        coming and taking our jobs
                        and the President
            is letting them live right next door
            bringing in their bombs
            and they hate us, right
            so they can go right back home
                        and leave the jobs for Americans
                        for us Seniors, just trying to pay our taxes.

And to my right and to my left
            men ate wild Mallard
each an entire duck blooding their plates.
            Now this evening, the creek below the pines
             is silver-pink
             shimmering toward the dark
and I think of the river running through us
             quietly asking its questions,
             low, beneath thought.

Kay Syrad

Second Prize, The Poetry School Diary Competition 2016

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Listening to moss

I take a blindfold, lie down and listen
to a half-globe of star-green star moss,
hear dense hairs ease up, and reflecting
leaf tips brace, catch narrow fronds sly
slowing the air, slow air lip a long leaf
and I just couldn’t remember humanness
even though or especially because she died
and I wasn’t there, nor she, all so very late

while the star-green star moss sips dew
in the breath-seed between air and rock
as if in death all were air and moss and fresh
floating love and death itself dissolved

until the powder-spores are lifted high,
full-free on breezy swirls and vortices.
for Judith, i.m.

Kay Syrad

in collection, Inland, 2019, Cinnamon Press,
ISBN 978-1-7886402-3-7

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