(30min. version: Sri Sri Ravi Shankar)
The main road was open only during daylight.
at night enormous flood-lit work resumed.
I drove the Inland route, through beef & dairy
4am beneath the moon
to reach the hospital
to fix the finger damaged
by a diving catch at mid on.
a winding hilly road, narrowed—
the solitary exit from the quake. the colour
in the sky was worth the extra miles.
I’d packed the van planing extra nights
and I knew the sort of story I could write,
at least ‘be more available’, I wrote, because
I haven’t much, but carry too much
…fuel, if you like, desire & repression.
all this gummy want & can’t decide…
would be to blow a hole too wide!
so I forgot about the clean sheets
and curtains newly installed, did not
even point the van towards
suburban spots to park and cruise
the caffeinated midday-lonely-wives,
the new divorced, the solo-mothers’
mothers, so swiftly I departed,
sleepy-eyed, in finger splint, the main Road
Home again, midday hot in autumn.
black bulls shaded in pine trees,
obeisant their own worn roadways,
sheep in regrowth rocking in heat.
half way, I drifted to the centre—
then to the other side, asleep
and heard chanting chanting chanting in my sleep
of a track often playing on repeat
and it woke me and I pulled back
out of the oncoming traffic
and saw that I had drifted, as I slept,
into the single gap in heavy continuous traffic.