Friday, May 27, 2016

Mikaela Castledine #148 Night

Night shrinking down
all round horizons closing in
with darkness an elastic border
which we push through
only with effort
and an emboldening breath
to stay inside our radiant circles
the dark being dangerous
hazardous and wild

The lighted fire strengthening
our own shadows as security
on walls become protectorates
sheetingglass a shivering portal
behind which dark looms waits longs
through which dark could pass so easily
but for the shrouding incapacitation
of a hanging cloth

Defences of the imagination
for a menace only of the mind
with the night bent on hiding
creeping deeds
footstepping fears
or nothing
but the tic and sigh of afterdrops
on black lit leaves
the point of small marsupials
the cold upwelling of thickened air
into the draft of the day
as it dislodges
and is dispelled


  1. Good poem.
    I'm reminded of Elias Canetti, Crowds and Power (1962):

    'THERE IS NOTHING that man fears more than the touch of the unknown. He wants to see what is reaching towards him, and to be able to recognize or at least classify it. Man always tends to avoid physical contact with anything strange. In the dark, the fear of an unexpected touch can mount to panic. Even clothes give insufficient security: it is easy to tear them and pierce through to the naked, smooth, defenceless flesh of the victim.
    All the distances which men create round themselves are dictated by this fear. They shut themselves in houses which no-one may enter, and only there feel some measure of security. The fear of burglars is not only the fear of being robbed, but also the fear of a sudden and unexpected clutch out of the darkness.'

  2. Yes an interesting quote. Avoiding contact with anything strange... that is the key I think, as in the darkness everything becomes strange.


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