Landscape

A simple poem about landscapes that we hold in our minds and mix up as we dream. There is a reference to Bob Dylan’s “Jokerman” and some influence from the Schubert/Goethe song Erlkönig. But none of that has any importance.

Landscape

 

An imaginary landscape always lies before us

Its hills and valleys like an eiderdown

Across forest and field wind blowing furious

Bending trees towards some tiny town

The sea beyond the sand-blown shore

Reflecting blueish, green and grey

Our inner ear hears wild waves roar

We see dark of night and light of day

 

A visitant’s vision: “Come closer” call the clouds

Silhouettes striding along battered beach

Their figures faint as shrunken shrouds

Beyond all our imaginations’ reach

And as distant ships sail into the mist

That settles sinking below sullen sky

Our head and face by raindrops kissed

That trickle from brow to lid to eye

 

And along the clifftop horsemen ride

As if pushed by giant unseen hand

They leap with long and eerie stride

As they pass behind a bold brass band

That plays any common cavalry tune

The conductor’s baton piercing darkened air

Dark grey gives way to a monster moon

And shadows bend beneath moonbeams’ glare

 

Then turning around, we see inland

The smoke and lights of a civilisation

A display that was by humans planned

A truth that’s born of realisation

That what is in the mind might be real

Regardless of any physical existence

And however rational we might feel

A landscape is as good as its memory’s persistence

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