out of nothing comes...
nothing comes out of nothing
cut / switch to
a small room, in a building of small rooms. “Enclosed thus”. Outside
there are bare trees groaning and twisting in the wind. A cold
long road with houses either side that finally leads down hill to a
railway station. The Exit.
Out on the estuary four people in a small dinghy at high tide. Canada
geese and oyster catchers around. The pale winter sunlight and cold
clear air. Onshore the village church contains the tomb of Canute’ s
daughter, the black Sussex raven emblazoned an the stone.
Sat round a fire. The black Saxon raven rampant.
In the dream.
Enclosed, I reach out. She moves in her ways that the facts of
closeness, familiarity, obscure. Our not quite knowing one another
in that sense of clear distance, that sense that comes with distance,
like old photos making everything so set, clear, and easily under-
stood - so we think.
Face to face the changes flicking by second by second. Not the face
fixed that yes I know her. Not the easy sum of qualities.
How long since you’ve known who you are? How long? Why who
you? Don’t know. Long time. Only have old photos, old images,
old ikons peeling. That man who lived at X, did Y, travelled to Z,
and back, “The Lone Gent”?
Why, who was that masked man? Why, don’t you know?
In the closeness that comes with shared actions. From keeping a
ream clean, keeping old clothes clean, cooking a meal to be eaten
by the both of us. In Thai: closeness, maybe on the edge of loosing
something gaining something. Questions of clarity and recognitions.
We swing hard a-port then let the current take us, the ebb tide
pulling us out towards the Channel. The birds about, the colours
of the sky, the waters, all the different plants growing beside the
estuary, and the heavy brown ploughed fields behind these banks.
Here, more than anywhere else, every thing, all becomes beautitul
and exciting - and the fact of being alive at such moments,
being filled with this Immense beauty, right, Rilke, “ecstasy”,
makes the fact of living immeasurably precious.
Enclosed by cold in the winter. The clear sharp days walking down
hill looking out to sea, the wind up, the waves crashing on the
shingle beaches. And the days of rain and harsh grey skies, coming
home from work in the dark through the car lights and shop lights.
The exit always there. I can’t say I “know” you. But neither can I
say what “knowing” is. We are here, and somehow It works, our
The sky, the gulls wheeling and squawking above, the flint walls of
these South Saxon churches, the yew trees branching up into that
winter sky. I know these. But not what you’re thinking, what anyone
is thinking. I can never know that, only work with that - as it comes.
Open arms open air come clear.
The dinghy is brought ashore. The people drag it up the bank and
carry it to the cottage where they stow it neatly. Everything “ship shape”
Out to sea the coasters head for Shoreham and Newhaven. Along
the coast small blue trains rattle along through Chichester,
Littlehampton, Worthing, and on to Brighton.
The fire is stoked up in the small roam. The people in the cottage
all eat dinner together, are happy in one another’s company.
That I love you, we know this, parting the branches and ferns as
we push on through the wood.
From Oasis No 15 (1976)