romanglass (romanglass) wrote in magne_f,

light reading part 1

Ok so you know how you can have something on your to do list that you enjoy doing, but you put it off because there are things you have to do, so that you can have something to look forward to when you do have some free time, but then after a while you haven't gotten to the thing you actually like doing, which then makes it feel a bit like something you have to do instead of something you want to do, and suddenly it's a chore so you begin to put it off because it doesn't seem fun anymore?

Yeah, that's where my post about the 'We Are Here' lyrics / Magne poetry went. Oops.

But all is not lost, as I said before it was interesting to read some of that stuff over again and I did mark a few poems that caught my attention this time around. For light reading and absolutely no meaningful or new revelations :

From Building Ruins:

standing in your doorway
again and again

am I coming or going
you never know

every day:
you in your kitchen

and all I am to you now
is an empty chair

always everywhere
never there

This one reminds me a bit of 'in a quiet corner' - sort of an idea of sharing space in memory or mind, but not in reality; it makes me think of layers of tracing paper over a picture of rooms in a home: peel one layer back and someone is in the kitchen, put the other layer back on and two people are at home but in separate rooms. It presents bonds in a different way, to me it's a new idea that a significant part of a bond can be absence and how people deal with it. One thing I find interesting about this is there is no sense of whether being together or apart brings joy or sadness or any other emotion. I believe you're supposed to read this and feel a weight of separation there, but that is probably because I can't fathom that kind of literal or figurative distance in a relationship.

From Ember:

you didn't know
you were swimming with sharks
did you?

you had no idea even
that this was out to sea
many miles from shore

you did not see
fins closing in

with the afternoon light fading

you had no clue they were sharks
- did you?

their silent glide
masking the seriousness
of their purpose

full of faith
in the nobility of your own

you never thought that
keeping my limp body afloat
would put you in harms way

but I am leaking

and their sense of smell
is legend

I've always liked this one. I don't have anything earth-shattering to say about it, I guess the meaning is clear but as to why I sometimes read it through several times, I'm not sure. There is a recurring element in Magne's poetry about people helping one another; it is not always clear whether the help is actually appreciated or not ('don't do me any favours' or 'spare me' your 'clear thoughts and consideration' or 'I forgive you' for giving unconditionally) - but most often the expression seems to be that the help comes from an ingenuine source and is not wanted. The line above 'full of faith / in the nobility of your own' always strikes me as the 'helper' is not motivated out of real loyalty but out of a desire to play the role of a good friend or be seen to do the right thing. Whereas the poem 'I forgive you' seems more a self-recrimination, an acknowledgement that someone is being supportive from the most loving motivations, and the 'rejection' of this support actually illustrates the object's regret that the support is not mutual - although the entire context is not there, the 'I forgive you' poem hints that the object's nature prevents both equality and the possibility of change. We are who we are.

Anyway the sense of danger in the poem above is so intriguing; whatever brought them together in this dependent situation, however willing or unwilling a recipient of help the object is, however genuine (or not) the helper's motivations are, they are both bound together in a desperate plight. Life is like that, we get bound by things we don't choose, and sometimes choose danger - or put a friend in danger - unwittingly. There is no apology and no thanks here, I find that so interesting. You read it with your own filter of knowledge and experience, and you decide if the object regrets the fact that the helper may be dragged down with him, or if the helper would choose to be there if they had known there were sharks. Pretty heavy stuff.

I have more to say on the help/support theme, but I think that will be another post.

From Birthrightis:

Not the full poem, but this stanza grabbed me:

with all the hope crushed now
between you and me
what good is
making a wish

And another short sound bite:

if sadness comes in colour
mine's a Payne's gray

I never noticed that line before, but considering an entire multi-dimensional project of Magne's was called 'Payne's Gray', it is a bit of a melancholy revelation that the color signifies sadness to him. I wonder what color joy is to him, and whether we'll ever get to see/read/hear it.

And lastly, more on the theme of absence:

I am not gone
just because I am away
I am not here
just because I'm here today

Again that idea that separation is defined in different ways, this makes you wonder about how such a bond could possibly thrive under the circumstances. Sometimes being apart from someone actually makes you feel closer; sometimes having them around is like sitting with a stranger. I guess the answer is not necessarily in physical nearness but in a nearness of the mind. People who are separated for really long periods of time have to develop that nearness of mind because that is how you can stand the loneliness.
Tags: poetry

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