SPOTLIGHT: ‘All Revolutions Begin This Way’ by Elizabeth Barton

Solaris Remembered

The turn of the reel,
frozen in aspic of words, a poem
burns its way to timeless display
flickering perennial in a film.

The wheel of time fixes
its boundaries with one kiss,
a pledge of love unbroken
beyond the clasp of death.

The verse returns, hope held
breathless above despair,
defiant in its test of survival
when he remembered you,

and made romance the talisman
pinned to all his years, a scope
of foolish joy laughing at loss,
an immortal token for his only love.

A poet long dead brought back to life
the scripted road for lovers perilous,
and wending their way through all the world,
were bound and reunited at journey’s end.


An old green caravan, a relic
of yesteryear, slumbers in an orchard
of rust and foliage, homely and inviting
to itinerant travellers. I spent unrecorded
days in its loving space, old smells
reminded me of childhood; flaked paint,
light fixtures never mended, quaintly
indifferent to progress. I dreamed within
its walls a lost world, when all whirled
about me; the clouds, the song of a thrush,
fragile petals caught on the wind, scent
of lemon and orange blossom in their wing.
I wandered in its confines to distant places,
twilit beaches with whispered tides, starlit
canopies spread over remembered hills,
warm sand underfoot, intrepid ocean,
its roaring voice rolling through time;
and from where I lay cosseted in rustic peace,
I journeyed a thousand miles, a spirit of air,
under the glow of a faded lamp.

Orchard Vignette

The air hangs thick with pungent odours,
rotting fruit mingled with new blossom;
lemon, orange, jasmine, perfumed death in life.
In dawn’s darkness roosters crow, raucous duets,
a chuckling riot of tuis in tumbling song
herald the smudge of first light.
Kereru monotonously cry; a hen has just
laid an egg. Sky-lit, a lone grey thrush
returns to sing, perched atop a disused aerial
crooked as a scarecrow.

Sirius has reappeared in the East, Orion’s guide;
Jupiter keeps vigil westward where Venus
gloriously orbed, held court the night before.
Rain-heavy air carries the drone of bees
thronged in twisted old citrus trees.
The sky grows slate, morning rises sepulchre still;
an old black dog saunters past like an extra
from a film set, its arthritic legs cocked
at strange angles, incidental
yet rich with meaning.


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