Thursday, 13 August 2009

in the in-between

Originally uploaded by rubydoomsday

like joan didion writes, when i find myself in choppy waters, i 'go to the literature'. writers are the ones i hope understand the world better than me, or at least there is comfort found in their tales of the journey back from the dark edges. this is the power of stories. keep turning the page. you'll see.

when i was at university i swallowed books of poetry whole. most of it passed through me or maybe into me, i'm not sure which. one poem in particular has driven me mad since i read it ten (ten!) years ago - i could only remember a few of the lines, and searching for it in books or online yielded nothing.

yesterday in frustration i googled the poet, alan riach, and found an email address for him. i explained that his poem was important and asked him to please tell me where i could find it. he emailed me back less than two hours later to tell me that it had only ever been published in a magazine but he'd do his best to find it.

this morning it was waiting in my inbox. wowsers.

i hope he won't mind me publishing it here. i think it should be in the world.


In darkness how they haunt us, these shadows of a past we know –
a past we always know we’re on the point of superseding –
always in the moment of the dawn’s anticipation, letting go
of an evening spent before this sun had risen.

May all the hauntings be of favoured memories of real things
Not things you’d wish forgotten or that never should have happened.

Let them linger in their traces as they go. Let them lead to this.

- Alan Riach

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