The Mile High Poets Society

I’d like to share with you a poem that I wrote yesterday, while sitting in an aeroplane somewhere over Southern Europe. I say yesterday, but I can’t be sure of that, having crossed several time zones since then. And I say poem, but it’s actually more like a short piece of descriptive (and rather surreal) prose. But I decided to follow what seems to be the trend at the moment by throwing in a few random line-breaks and calling it a poem. After all, what makes something poetry is the same as what makes something art – the creator (of the work, not the fictional ‘Creator’) saying that it is.

So here goes. …Well, actually, I think I should set the scene first – changeIMG_20160202_053340 the mood from flippant to something more serious. So imagine me in full imaginative flow, gazing out of the window, all starry-eyed, at the beautiful cloudscape below (yes below, and not above). I’m on my way to Singapore, for a few days, and then on to my adopted home-from-home, Australia, and a few weeks spent mostly in beautiful, elemental natural environments – deserted beaches, bush-land teeming with exotic wildlife and, hopefully, some lovely warm weather. I’m going to walk, swim, relax, sketch and, most importantly; write. Perhaps I’m expecting too much from myself, but I’m hoping to complete a first draft of my novel, knock out a few short stories, and perhaps dream myself into some poems too. Absolutely no pressure. But I’ve made a start already. Whether it’s a good start or not, I’ll leave for you to judge.

 

The Plains of Heaven

A landscape of low white peaks and soft grey shadows extends away into the distance.
The horizon is a band of white,
Evaporating up into ever deepening blue.
Impenetrable cloud, like deep snow on solid ground,
But cotton-wool soft: a soft-toy Antarctic landscape.
I want to get out, I want to fall from this aeroplane,
To plummet through the air into a duvet-soft landing.
I feel as though the cloud must be able to hold me, to welcome me;
To embrace me into the purity of a world untainted by people, unsullied by life.

There’s silence, and stillness, and alone at last,
I lie on my back, cosseted; at peace.
I could stand up, walk, take one leaping step after another,
Bound moon-like across the endless plateau,
Entranced, indefatigable, bouncing along, happy now;
Joyous in the reborn innocence of childhood.
But it’s so comfortable just lying still in my cotton-wool womb.
I can’t bear to move.

My eyelids feel heavy; they close,
The whiteness engulfs me and I fall asleep.

Note: The plains of Heaven is the title of a painting by John Martin , a nineteenth century artist who specialised in very large canvases showing immense landscapes, seascapes, skyscapes; detailed, intense stunning works. Of course, he was working before aeroplanes had been invented, so he could only imagine what I was fortunate enough to experience

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About literarylad

Graham Wright is an author whose first novel, Single Point Perspective, is set in and around the city of Manchester, where he lived and worked for more than fifteen years. It's a dramatic piece of literary fiction that is easy to read, imaginative, serious and thoughtful, but with a sense of humour. Graham now lives in South Wales, and is busy writing his second novel.
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