Friday, January 13, 2017

Jeff Skewes #2 draft 3.

I see this work as the 2nd (of more than thirty but less than 52?) poems in my Silk on the Road project; a road trip of memory and myth; an allegorical journey that takes place during an inexact time across the imaginary lands I've been conjuring to part-mimic those of the fabled Silk Road (although think magic-realism with historical and geographical liberties) in order to form a more lucid and contemporary narrative.

'Start' is a kind-of second prelude to the Silk series, a simple kick starter so I have an eye on the rhythm here and of the unfolding over-all project which is always tricky as they are yet to appear.

My own visual images are a tandem element for Silk on the Road.

This is an updated draft titled as 'Begin', an earlier was posted on Monday for my #2 / 52 


Two previous drafts are pasted below this latest version...


No religion every day
nor philosophy's chant
the only way

Rumi to Rimbaud
guru or saint
not the only path

paint sing write the names
bring attention
to the sky

one of life's great 
highlights to look
within the fire

bon voyage

dance on plates
heaven's not
a catalogue

Jan 13 2017

image: Without within - J Skewes 
detail view from inside James Turrell's  installation 'Within without' 
photograph: JSkewes


I posted this (below) 2nd version on 52 
9 Jan 2017
also titled 'Begin'.


No religion every day
philosophy chant

Rumi to Rimbaud
saint guru

holy name
bring attention

to life's

dance on plates
bon voyage

heaven's not

a catalogue

Jan 9 2017

This is a version posted last year on 365+1
titled as 'Start don't begin'.

and redrafted the later versions above for 52

Start don't begin

No religion everyday
Rimbaud to Rumi
cuts attention too!

the highlight
of the high-life
is to look up
dancing on plates

heaven's not a

(Aug 2016)


  1. I have to confess I find this ending more puzzling every time I see it

  2. guess that means it's got me thinking!

  3. I definitely prefer the third version of this poem, for rhythmic reasons first of all. I must confess the explanation you give helped me to understand this poem as an invitation, a “welcome aboard/ on board” kind of poem. Seen from that angle it works perfectly well to me.

    “The heaven’s not a catalogue”, in my mind, addresses and mocks travel agencies policies and ads and I like this tone of irony very much!

    1. Thanks for reading Beatrice :) and I see you really got the welcome aboard kind-of preface positing of this preliminary piece in this journey series.

  4. I thought it might be about a list of deities

    1. Thanks for the thinking Kit. Their certainly on the cards...
      I'm still not 100percent happy with #3 and think I should try it again.