for Peter Albrecht
When the magic wears off
as it sometimes must
And the dizziest dreams
crumble to dust . . .
When the name you repeated
a thousand times
No more is remembered
in letters and rhymes . . .
When the boy's young body
with which you were blessed
Is a sleepy old man
who slowly gets dressed . . .
The nest where you slumbered
no longer is warm
And the populous pavements
have lost their charm . . .
When work becomes duty
instead of delight,
Your partner lacks feeling
and nothing is right . . .
Let go of everything,
Let go of everything,let go and let God.
KOKSIJDE BY THE SEA
Then we all went out for a walk.
The indescribable sky of mid-November as far as I remember
contained a freshly picked pumpkin ready for pumpkin soup.
Two photographs of the group
showed us to be enjoying ourselves.
Shapely shoes on shelves in high street shops
made me think of Neruda and peppermint drops.
There was eye contact now and then.
Belgian women are not afraid of English men.
My woolly hair and beard did not seem unduly weird
to the queens of Koksijde.
The two sisters made a dash for Tommy Hilfiger,
leaving me to stand outside like an abandoned bride
or Dante at the gates of Hell watching the children on the caroussel.
Video games, pizza, skirts, more and more shoes.
Get out the old guitar. Play me the blues.
Tell me unbelievable tales of times when nobody had heard of sales
and little fish were never sucked into the jaws of megalithic whales.
Take me down to the beach where prices are within my reach.
Darkness is closing in. Time for cocktails, dates and sin.
Mick slips his foot into a boot masculine but cute
with several yards of lace to keep them in their place.
Now it's Maria's turn. She must have money to burn.
An awkward fit, just below the knee, dampens her frugality.
The pavements are a little thinner as we wander home for dinner
eyeing babies in their prams, O the darling little lambs
pouting at their pretty mothers, playing with their silly brothers.
One more purchase, then we'll go. A last quick look at Bel & Bo.
Cheese and wine and fine charcuterie remind me I am walking by the sea.
This bio place is more exciting. Fantasie grec looks quite inviting.
Cupboards in Hotel MaMa. Handsome stuff but home is far.
A picture which I could have done – a slash of white, a pitch black sun.
Then we all went back to Michel and Martine's shack.
Saturday 12 November 11.