Leaving for the lighthouse
A puzzling geography, medieval,
the earth a shrinking island surrounded
by dreams, gardens with golden poisons,
monsters and dangerous nonsense. Miles
of yesterdays locked under marmalade
cupboards in the house of useless cards.
You’re thinking of the lighthouse.
Before eyes can savour new horizons
memory sends narrow flashes like bullets;
this is how it’s done. You could escape
Mrs Kibblewhite, greaseproof sandwiches,
the cat and mouse grammar of neighbours,
relationships of inanity. The known world.
You’re picturing the lighthouse.
Rubble and glass cover the rug in half-dark.
Boards replace windows, dust eddies and settles.
Whole cities overturned. Outside the zone,
traffic in gridlock. If you leave now you can steer
by the stars, get there before all the fountains
go dry. For a curious moment you’re brave.
You’re leaving for the lighthouse.