THE CLOWN OF CONTRADICTION
From a drawing by ak
Exists a world
(yet its clocks are all silent)
a lost, lost world
("somewhere", "sometime", maria whispers)
- even the hands, the cruel hands of the clock
don't move anymore -
...a world, señora, cut from pain.
In this place, all the colours of your face!
In this place, the barricades are still singing
and the dead marching
their endless, restless march of the "rabble",
this is the place you see, clown,
in the eyes of the german girl.
But here i hold only a ghost between my arms,
i kiss the emptiness of lips,
i fall headlong into emptiness,
the wind scrapes the sadness from our bones.
This is the clown's embrace
a bitter embrace, the transience
And the busy world goes spinning
in its webs
all the ache of angels
set in stone, in silence, in concrete!
this world, this lost lost world...
...at midnight, at one a.m.
This must be the place where
no one ever meets
this crowded place,
this market for our nothingness
only the singing of the barricades:
all the arms embraced, that embrace no more,
only the dead still dancing
that can dance no more
and summer, long ago,
summer no more.
And love, at streetcorners, and alleys,
love, with no refuge nor asylum.
O clown of contradictions, if only
it was home and i held you
as you hold me
in the mirror of my eyes!
Séamas Carraher was born in Dublin, Ireland in 1956. He lives on the Ballyogan estate, in south County Dublin, at present.
Recent publications include poems in The Camel Saloon, ditch, Bone Orchard Poetry, Istanbul Literary Review and Pemmican. Previously his work has been published in Left Curve (No. 13, 14 & 20), Compages, Poetry Ireland Review, & the Anthology of Irish Poetry.