life as we know it 4


in the bilight

A pilgrim is journeying to Port Botany in search of coffee or a revelation, and the Spherical Polar Spirits, Altitude and Ascension, are helping him along with a little tough electric love. Part 1 is here.

Swerving water, a long slow
crash of breakers on the land,
as I journeyed in the minutes
of the bilight, when the sun
was yielding to the rise and stutter
of the streetlamps,
their denatured spectral substitution.

Around me in the street,
the blank façade of industry,
always less than its sum of parts,
and from the gloomy concrete,
Dalí’s mosquitoes, dystopian elephants
in chiaroscuro, were mocking me.

Before me in the raindrops,
I glimpsed a faint refraction,
the meniscal shape of a subtle gateway.

An indication, an alteration,
a new sentence, another paragraph,
and I went through,
but near enough to nothing happened.

My polar guides, Altitude and Ascension,
they stayed behind,
and above a nearby doorway,
an enticing neon offer caught my eye:



No, I’m definitely not the Medusa,
no, not at all,
and all her hairdo vipers shook their tiny heads.
I’m fully qualified, a therapist, a counselor
and confidante, 
so let’s begin.

She shuffled through a sheaf of papers
and poised a pencil.

We’ll start right here.
What’s the very last thing
you remember?

Those words, exactly.

Let’s fast forward, shall we?

She turned the pages hastily,
tossing them and tearing them,
their questions scattering and sailing
through the air.

What’s the very first thing?

A indivisible ether sea shining on the future,
so sharp it cuts the shore,
layered manuscripts of shale, anaerobic
physics and futility;
a solar railway, keepsakes long forgotten,

tiny insect motes,
cellophane rabbits with eye drops
glistening in the dew.

She glanced towards an ornamental
crocodile clock, and spoke to someone
I couldn’t see.

I’m afraid that’s all we have time for this week.

Who are you talking to?

to continue


artwork impartial memories (detail above)

52 thoughts on “life as we know it 4

  1. Thank you for part 4, Steve. “What’s the very last thing you remember? Those words, exactly”. I think your therapist is trying to run to reach someplace you have no interest in. Hope you will come across another FIRSST CONSSULTATION GRATISSS sign 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • My pleasure, Sobhana. Yes, it’s probably a bit unfair to therapists in general. I do think this particular client would be a challenge for any therapist, and that may apply to me as well. 😃

      The hissing sign and the Medusa both came about because the ‘s’ key is actually sticking on my keyboard. Inspiration, haha.

      Liked by 4 people

  2. Beautiful, brilliant and clever as always. Your poetry takes me places I’ve never been before. Or maybe it takes me to places I have been to before, and forgotten. Your Medusa took me back to Jason and the Argonauts, which I read when I was about 10 – Madam Medusa was one scary lady! And the crocodile clock reminds me of Peter Pan. That tick-tocking croc is after all of us. 🙂 But there’s a lightness about your poems that pokes fun at difficult truths. Gracias.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Siempre un placer, BG. I was thinking about childhood in relation to the “therapist,” and yes, that was the crocodile that came to mind. I think Medusa got a bad rap. In one version of the myth her “crime” was being raped. I’m kind of fond of her, and I wrote a story about her as well. Admittedly there weren’t many survivors 😄, but as long as she’s moderate with the snakes and the turning to stone, I’m good.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Ryrssyjia, I want to start off by apologizing that I’m slow as a wet week with WordPress. I don’t have enough time for it because I spend all my time complaining that I don’t have any time and apologizing, 😄 but I will get there eventually.

      As you probably worked out, I moderate links. I think most readers won’t click on them unless there’s a reason to.

      Anyway–Why look back when you’re going forward? For me, the catch with aphorisms is that the world is complicated and you can always find one to contradict another. In relation to the past, Socrates, “The unexamined life is not worth living” is handy. Sadly I examined mine and it scored an F minus. And the Buddhists: neither the past nor the future, it’s all about right now. I suppose in the end we choose what suits us.

      Thanks for reading, Steve.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Do Dali’s mosquitoes mock instead of suck blood? After all, doing both would require multi-tasking skills that no mosquitoes possess (as far as I know).
    How interesting that the therapist introduces herself by saying who she ISN’T. If she isn’t THE Medusa, where did she get the hairdo vipers from?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hard to know, although even in fantasy we need some logic. Leaving aside any metaphorical possibilities, I’m imagining they’re mocking by imitation, elongated shadows walking with the protagonist. They have trunks, so maybe at some point they drop the camouflage and attach themselves like leeches.

      I like to take people at face value, it’s simpler (as long as you don’t get turned to stone). Maybe … Ashley & Martin, serpent transplant. 😄


      • Yes, I was thinking of Peter Pan, although somewhere or other I wrote about the crocodile deity. I wasn’t aware of the connection with Anubis, thank you. Anubis has fascinated me ever since I suddenly came across him downstairs in an almost deserted museum (in Copenhagen maybe). Must have been my state of mind at the time; he made an impact. It’s funny that we have so much stunning media to amaze our senses, but it’s all about us, and a dark statue in a dusty museum can do the trick.

        Liked by 1 person

        • It is interesting to me, that in Disney’s Peter Pan, the hand is taken by the crocodile. And in the underworld, the heart (soul) is taken by the crocodile… now if you put those two together… The God Pan and Anubis have commonalities relatively… as cultures span across timelines … and Azimuths and Altitudes 🙂 (Mapping Coordinates) The Stars also align to the Underworld and the Gods as in the mythological world and Celestial world… the stars are named after the Gods and Goddesses. So back to the hand, heart, and soul…. “the hand is for Giving, not taking” … … I believe that is the ultimate idea behind the crocodile taking the hand in retrospect. That’s my two sense in putting my researches and experiences together Mr. Steve!! Blessings, love, and light….. it’s been a joy to read.

          Liked by 1 person

        • Thank you for your kind thoughts, Ryrssjia. I appreciate your in-depth analysis. Layer after layer with possible symbology, and so many mirrors, multiple reflections of our humanity. Yes, we are the common factor that links over millennia, and I suspect that, in many cases, even the creators did not fully appreciate the meaning of what they created. After all, for much creation in the Arts, the subconscious plays an important part.

          Liked by 1 person

  4. “She turned the pages hastily,
    tossing them and tearing them,
    their questions scattering and sailing
    through the air”- feel like how my mind works most days, I look up and expect a dialogue bubble. maybe I read too many comics. loving this series. life is as we know it, never understand it though.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks, Gina, very glad you shared your impression of those airborne questions. How I miss comics. And computer games. It’s all tick tick tick now.

      I agree, and understanding is overrated. I say that even though I spend a lot of my time trying to do it.

      Liked by 1 person

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