Gorse

          Star tetrahedron, gorse is evergreen; everyone of us

Growing into spines & thorny families.  Something is

Concealed,—hedges of our colonial nursery—stand-

alone windbreaks, now the good missionaries have gone by

Turning into everyone else, not leaving.       It’s late always

In the old country; the air was now

& again as land buckled on customs, and canvas

Of undone buildings flapped like anything in the wind.

In this state-of-the-world how funny

You draw breath; like sleep; like water so clear

It’s dry.  All the while the mystery that proved

As common as the agriculture you never see in action;

Hatched from seeds that lay dead

On the ground for up to half

Of a hundred years—cutting out

light eventually replacing themselves.  Sound familiar?

An ornamental species whose removal creates

The very conditions for growing.  Surrounded

      forest : absent

Grasslands.  As if there were no such thing as winter

Or spring time is war time when

Gorse is evergreen;—every stellated thorn pushing from

The side of another at whatever, like a gilt badge

Fuming on the surface of a garment, of over-

flowering boundaries.  When gorse is out of blossom,

kissing’s out of fashion . . . And for a few moments

You give all your breath.

          I’m trying to spend more time with my breath held in

Than holding the world at bay.  To turn the height of drawing in

Into my relaxed point of rest—mouth kept around

A mouthful of the soft shoots of air, until everything turns

Into everything else.  The fraction of a gorse spine

To standing air; of a bright stalk to one in a bruised heap

Threshed to feed horses that don’t mind the thistles . . .—and I feel

Badly for the space everything is always pushing

Out of the way. The scene of countless

      germinations without bothering with the tragedy of change.