Feathers of Faith

by Steve 'Manifold' Anderson

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  • The second volume of poems by Steve 'Manifold' Anderson
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1.
Feathers of Faith There is no wax in these wings Yellowing song under moon-scythe brings A Deity In sheep's cloth Lambing, an optional ingredient in life-broth Not so the wing-maker, winging in the stands A pair for every day Grown to fit For they will come out and be spread Like clouds buttering the horizon Till beating, pinions scoop clear the sky Oh, that these wings were made of wax and flight delayed Till lambs had lambed And I with them had played
2.
Forgotten Fathers crowd the town The yard is bare Save... for a crown Of flowers Birth and death Once recalled No longer drawing ardour This lifelessness Death incarnate pulls together Over beer Resolving disingenuous cheer And laughter almost true Sits loose upon unsteady stone Events will surely rock and strew Man to man This listless man This man un-woman This man un-known to temple Un-known to life of order Ordinary man no longer known to God Surges onto life Where no-one Man or other Will sing.... Or craft.... or even plod God's patience played too long 'Man's Rights' Served for the wrong
3.
The crow tears bark from the fallen bough To nest Easter and young The poet tears words from the flesh of now To wrest creature unsung Hearing, hearing, willow wind flailing Wherever we are, we are Gentle a soul open to threshing Readies the way with care Return of those that were taught to fly Now learn to fledge again Not ill-prepared such babes will cry With joy in bearing pain Treasure from such tender loss Settles on who remain Well lived secures the path across Good life... good death in train
4.
Prologue Feeling utterly desperate and bereft I woke from a vivid dream Raw with emotion Palpable images gnawed at my waking Until I started to write... I had a dream I was a young child at school An adolescent A parent Innumerable Me of all ages With a gap where a Man might have Become These characters were dream-observed As separate individuals Being spoken to by a final Me A whole Me Intellectually integrated with an emotionally healthy Me So that the child The youth The inadequate father Could be relieved Their weight of Failure and Incompleteness In this telling In this dialogue The idea of one performance A story of life and how to love it, formed perfectly A One Man Show That articulated to every One of my life's being A Holy Spirit, babel-tongue telling Of the best way To see joyfully Each struggle along the way It was all there Contained by the dream In a script with stage and costume set The curtain about to rise with buzzing anticipation From all the people I had been And I, this Me Knew at last I could let go Then, amongst the crowded audience of Me Another person appeared My son A better man than I shall ever have been And he asked something of Me Not only had I no answer but neither Could I understand his beautiful question He had moved beyond me and my learning Now with the curtain up on a bare stage My script lost And naked without costume The strains of all the thousands of Me that I'd been about to break Stirred me into a vortex of whirlpool soul And I was so sad So sad So sad that I The One Man Show Was unfulfilled Because now the performance Had become the wake to my own funeral Here I watched the grief of another audience That could have been But were not Me Epilogue Looking back The desire to change the people I have been Has found the will to accept The person I have become That person has nurtured The Man in my son
5.
6.
Night Walk 02:16
Light at the high factory window Gives no consoling sense of community But accentuates the detachment of a cold cobble-shone walk A midnight shingle-wet trudge home Destination known, but only upon arrival Thoughts combed by capstan's longing tooth Rectify direction: align logos, language and lip Pace imbued with a search: fireside, settle and stool In this town less tawdry, disdain of the day dormantly dignified Fealty an encumbrance of night's transience Jaded tread adopts the resignation of needful endurance Old paths splashed and dappled, street lit and drizzled Boots on the barren byway beyond walls' veiled vigour On, on, distant hum peters: tweet, rat-scuttle Horizon of familiar industry and abandoned ways Allure of the kettle's caress provokes a probe for the key Knowing all but the blanket's address feet lift the spirit on again And this final curve of road unfurls to Felix's greeting Yard, shed and drain enjoy romantic cheer as back door Becomes portal to blissful ease. Home
7.
And now the truth Life has been nothing but a Cock-Fight Since circumcision for cystitis Pissing myself at primary school Scholastic investigations of The member's elastic and imagined Cock-Ups On to the phallocentric career of Cocked-up Up-Cocking Cadencing in a crescendo of cock-clap Herpes recurrent from the One-Night-Hump Faltering feather touch fannying about Fuck-failing father Losing my willy to live In cancer's cure of chemical castration Life shows itself a test No more testosterone's testicular torment But of non-copular courage Winning the will to live With intimacy of self disabused Romance reordered Friendship found In truth The now
8.
Forgotten Fathers crowd the town The yard is bare Save... for a crown Of flowers Birth and death Once recalled No longer drawing ardour This lifelessness Death incarnate pulls together Over beer Resolving disingenuous cheer And laughter almost true Sits loose upon unsteady stone Events will surely rock and strew Man to man This listless man This man un-woman This man un-known to temple Un-known to life of order ordinary man no longer known to God Surges onto life Where no-one Man or other Will sing.... Or craft.... or even plod God's patience played too long 'Man's Rights' Served for the wrong
9.
The Yew Berry The joy of spring without its cleaning Like Ramadan for the camel I sit with indifferent muse Unforgiving Unspeaking Unrepentant A stalwart in the constancy of a vacant stare Waiting to hear love An empty mirror Longing to be looked into and admired Frames perfectly the unrequited Yet, let rainbow strike a glance And reflectionlessness becomes a window bright Vacancy a meadow of wild flower healing That a hand was held Enough It must be Or the yew berry shall be my only fruit I Write to Forget You should write more she said Would that be that I might dwell less Expression changes the event The action, the emotion, the feeling Transformed in the recollection The word is not the voice, the letter not the word The read not the written Thus writing changes the writer Reading, the reader And the evening, the day But now the pit of my stomach remembers only Our Lonely Solitude Who decides the manner of distress that warrants comfort? Love comforts all Ugly or rude Love comforts Weak or poor Love comforts Right and wrong Love comforts Our lonely solitude Yours Mine The love of comfort denies the comfort of love I was so proud of you You said I am so proud of you I am I love you You said I love You I do Then why does such discomfort? The loneliness of the unrequited lover
10.
This open door Bars the way Allowing passage Without threshold The room without And standing in And standing out Are equally denied For standing in your presence I have not got the pride Your wisdom reigneth My indecision staineth The floor and all around And all the good that's left me Waits To say goodbye Now, for a moment linger Love, for a moment tried But warm and fed, too easy Be gone ungrateful guest For lifted veils Of time And pace Lack all that's known of my good grace And love, that says the love word And love, that fits inside Is gone But for the saying And saying, ever lied

about

Steve and Andy have been performing poetry and improvised piano for several years. This is their first official recording.

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released April 6, 2019

Poetry and spoken word - Steve 'Manifold' Anderson
Improvised Blüthner grand piano and didge - Andy Wood

Recorded by Graham Wright at Pied Piper Pianos - Haworth

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Steve 'Manifold' Anderson UK

Seeds of this collaboration were sown in 2010. Andy and Steve were bumping into each other’s performances at venues in Hebden Bridge. The acquaintance developed over some years and began to find a peculiar shared perspective.
Tentatively, playing together developed into the current work. A charity event; 'Poetry and Prostate’ created by Steve and Andy has been performed twice to date.
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