No conscience in escape by Ivan Donn Carswell

Even tonight will pass into memory’s oblivion,
doomed, despite an ardent reunion
of once estranged yet precisely matched parts,
to a guiltless verdict – a foregone conclusion.
As you dissolve twice-blessed
in a kaleidoscope of dreams,
claimed by the deep, curdling sands
and sink, absorbed in sated self-suffusion,
I sense hard-edged awareness balefully prick,
dredging insomnia, haggardly thick with past phantoms
relating the fates of all vast and antique storms
that ever rose and menaced our skies, a raging
suspension of consensual lives which all but passed
into nothing; wise and implausible storms that calmed
hearts in thrall, teased sad wrinkled eyes before falling
easily upon our sore and thirsting land.

Even tonight will last only as long
as eponymous night can last, decreed
by blindness and a beggar’s mask to beg
in the darkness ahead of the light - and
when it is all said and done, perpetually
follow a transient path
under an old and intransitive sun.

And in the evening’s ritual dying and before tomorrow’s dawn flies
this night’s unguent shore I am more awake than trying to sleep,
at last alive in glory, fast-steeped, encased in a mould
of your liquid embrace where tied in fine bondings I fuse
with the dew from your sleep-used cheeks, rejoice in the scent
of your fragrant hair; absorbed in still-comfort and reading your skin’s
mercerised signs from the melt of our union – united in sum
and not caring to part, suborned, a transfusion of wearing your heart.

Yet I desert you again in a dilettante swoon, atoning for deeds,
bleeding with sins, an amateur whom while knowing his trial,
self-mutilates in thin pledges and bogus denial,
unable to render or stomach his fate… I won’t be reborn, it’s too late
and too long to the innocence of dawn; the judging is done, it schemes
in the bier, and calamitously so for surely it seems
I’ve abused my renewal in your library of dreams.

As the light from a new day splits the anxious night
along its softened seams and spreads a filigree
of lucent threads to gleam in my mired eyes,
I am alight; the clouded cold ebbs to journey’s end
and tangles in the bends of broken sleep,
and though I’ve only strung a line or two
in a dearth of odds and ends where meaning’s clear
I know I can return from here; night’s sentinel will wait
good-naturedly to place my fate. I can without fear
rejoin your embrace and thrill in the joy of your awakening face;
comforts abide and time has stood still in a blaze of enlightenment;
I know what is true – as I always will, my comfort is You,
Forever is true, You are as you are, and You are as I see you.

by Ivan Donn Carswell

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