Both

In your opponents face,
In the coin toss –
You won
He lost,
He won
You lost

– You wear each others masks,
Feel the flip side feeling,
Touch
The sharing self,

Feel one side –
North
Or connected south –

Reservoir of sameness
Joined and spinning fast,

Bullyvictim psychology
Yoked like binary stars
In gravity entrapment,

Not two distinct,
But one swirling
Entity of both,

Like the coin flickering
Through its duplicity,
Showing
Its alternate pulsar sides.

© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2015

Bracken Brown

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Swathe of
Bracken brown
Entanglement
Stitched through
With Bramble.

A burr enmeshed,
Stalks
In camouflaged web
Lie limp,
Draped seasonal.

A winter tree,
Like a thistle head
Hooking
Loose threads
And dry tendril.

Ground-sink
Draws matter
In degraded death
To fall soil-ward
In depth autumnal.

© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2015

Canvas

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Clouds,
Gale grey
And hasty

Full of
Wind-thrift
And mischief,

Steal leaves
And flick
Them

Rotational
And tumbling,
Gimballed on gust

And inconsistency
Tremulous in the trees
Bare branch

And sway
And creak
And core wood

Straining in root-sap
Xylem tendons,
Dormant and slow

But rope strong,
Green strong
Foundation

To the earth’s
Sound clag
And sucking

Cohesive force
To hold the winter
Skeletal

And disrobed,
And canvas blank
For next year’s newness.

© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2015

Perfection

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Perfection
In light’s revelation,

In the leaves’
Dying pyre,

In their fall
To the sodden ground

Or in the river’s
Swift transition.

Perfection
In the tree trunk,

In its conforming shape
Wound around

The order of being:
Beauty in naturalness

And spontaneities arrival
In art’s perfect work.

© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2015

© image Ann Truesdale, 2015

Black Friday

We are dogs in the trap,
thoroughbreds
straining in the cage.

The doors are not yet open
but our faces
are flat against the glass.

We’re squeezed together,
shoulders knocking,
anticipation breathes

through the crowd
as one singular excited thought:
our hearts beat fast.

We can see the shop assistants
hopping from foot to nervous foot,
worry in thier downturned mouths.

They see the pack outside
with lolling tongues, wide eyes
and desire:

to buy, purchase, get
by any means: we’re all salivating,
our finger nails are sharp.

We’ll fight if we must
as it’s all for one
and one for one

in the up and coming scrum.
And if it’s a granny
who goes sprawling

then there’s one less
in the queue, one less
elbo in the eye,

one less combatant
who needs flooring
in the mad dash

to come.
Hold on,
I hear something!

Wait!  No one breathe.
It’s the shop assistant:
her hand is at the latch.

I can feel the ground swell,
the moment near unburdening,
the instant triggered

and about to explode
in claws skittering on tiles
and limbs grasping,

flailing hands
and shouts of
mine, mine, mine!

Here we go
in madness flow:
she’s opening the door.

© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2015

A Story From The Western Sea

Far off in the Western Sea of dreams and beginnings there was the birth of a story. It bubbled up from beneath, from deep in the gloom of a cold benthos, where strange things scuttle and make their homes. Some bubbles rise as stars while others are neutral. This one was like the very first born thought, as fresh as the newest thing, pale skinned and beautiful. From the waves of the Western Sea it rose high and caught prevailing winds. With birds and things airborne it navigated the Coriolis force and felt the call of land like a heart beat in its body. For days it watched and winged on blue ether and mist. And when it saw the brown earth it dropped like a stone and kissed the hard, dry soil and burrowed as its feeling decreed. And then it waited. And waited. And waited. And when the time was right it germinated on sweet water and the worlds urge to change and put up a shoot, then a leaf, then a flower: a new flower that no one had ever seen before.

© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2015

The End Of The Written Word

If voice
Were sky blue,
Without a word
To clutter the music,
Poetry would find
Its end
In ink’s redundancy,
The written word
Consigned
To beyond memory’s
Grasping hand.
Voice
Would become movement
Of soul through energy
And energy intern
Through the body of the man.
And happening
Would happen only in the instant
And not either side of now.
And thus time itself
Would wink from existence
And yet stretch out
In forever’s eternal flow.

© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2015

Epoque

In the black and white photograph
the 19th century station bustles with
top hats and ladies in feathered felt,
and there isn’t a man without a
moustache or sideburns flanking.

Hot bellied locomotives simmer
in the sidings and polished carriages
queue in timely lines while walruses
inspect pocket watches and point at
the world with portly cigars.

There isn’t a thing out of time: every
article existing is touched by the age,
coloured by fashions of the mind;
the ladies fine frocks of puff
petticoats and pinafores, the hiss

and mist of escaping steam, the
brass tubing veining engines, the
great hall aloft on stanchions of cast
iron. Even the tea cup and train ticket
exude époque and the purity of

happenings coinciding to form all
that was in that moment then. And
when I look I can’t find a thing that
seems unreal. Is this a trick? Will my
decedents look upon the vistas of

our time and see rich nostalgia
colouring the skin of everything. Or
will they see the lack of meaning by
which we shape, steer and live our lives
and want no part of its empty shame?

© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2015