DEEP SPACE POEMS
I am delighted to be collaborating with the poet Susan Taylor. Susan has written poems inspired by my deep space images.
ABOUT SUSAN TAYLOR
Susan Taylor has seven published collections of poetry and a variety of collaborative chapbooks & CDs. She performs her poetry regularly at poetry venues and festivals in the South West of the UK, including Ways With Words, Torbay Festival of Poetry, St Ives Literature Festival and Glas-Denbury, as well as at the open mic events she co-runs with her partner, Simon Williams.
Susan holds a Masters in Creative Writing from Bath Spa University, where she was also a part-time lecturer on their Undergraduate Program. Creative collaborations continue Susan’s commitment to the exploration of the interface between poetry and its audience through work in different media and environments.
GLIMPSE OF THE SOUL
By Susan Taylor
Suddenly stars, said to be made of fire, are live things,
young and energetic, kicking up the gas and dust
beyond my understanding, but I can dream
and be transported that way here,
where multifold stars are being born,
as attendant pillars of cloud usher them
into their places.
An inadequate brain
signals it needs my make-belief eyes
to watch for trusted shapes to pick out
from this maelstrom of imagery.
It needs some familiarity among
all this awe.
It thirsts for it – to drink it in.
So I am imagining the biggest creatures
who walk the earth
and here they come
elephants of a galactic kind.
Two, drawn in sapphire light –
the mother peering out at me,
great African ears akimbo,
the youngster in profile, looking lost
And I wonder
how else should a young celestial elephant be?
There’s no words for the size of them;
They’re light years, light years, light years.
Can I fasten – here –
something of the stars
as they form in front of me.
I deal in reverie, incubation
and, if I’m ever lucky,
Those pachiderms of the soul
are wreathed in honeyed light.
They’re safe up there,
cupped in the palms of alien hands,
a million years of age and infinitely caring,
through withering blasts of tempest and turmoil,
FROM THE WITCH'S BROOM NEBULA
By Susan Taylor
I have been called Finger of God,
the Western and Eastern Veil,
Flamentary Nebula in the constellation of The Swan;
one of the largest and brightest there is.
You might say I take a free hand,
but being a shower of hands,
I paint space in angelic streams,
holding my firework wings across vast distances.
A crimson down of light
stipples my underside,
electric blue flashes feather lengthwise
my supernova proportions.
They say this shell of mine
is notoriously difficult to see,
but with the right filter I’ve been admired
without Herschel’s invention.
I am a wonder of swirling skirts:
I have more hooves than a herd of horses,
more streamlined a head than a jaguar,
I run behind naked-eye star 52 Cygnus.