Poem 5 - Gently disintegrate me...

The fifth draft poem for Matthew Sweeney's Guardian Unlimited workshop, and quite unusually for me, a poem that overtly deals with issues of faith, proof, and belief:

Gently disintegrate me
into this world, Lord,
when I am gone,

disperse my soul
and spirit from the flesh
of my faithful form

to the far corners
of this earth – wind, sea,
sky, earth, make me

one with the very atoms
and quarks of this universe
that people waste entire lives on;

debating whether or not
you are the ultimate source of. For
when I am the very same

as the trees and clouds and rains I see
before me, Creator, that,
I think, will be proof enough.


Colin Will said...

Very nice Ben. It's neat and well thought out, carefully constructed, and it has something to say. Excellent.

Ben Wilkinson said...

Thanks, Colin, glad you liked it. I was shocked the way it went in the end, but I think exercises like this are good for pushing you out of your usual style; the way you get used to starting a poem, as it were.

Katy Murr said...

My eyes are too tired to read (I just wrote 'arrive' by mistake there :/) and give you some attempt at a reply to the poem. I'll try tomorrow, if it's still up. All I'm commenting here for is to exclaim wow! - Brave New World fan? I caught it in your library.

Hope you're enjoying the summer?

And yes, exercises such as this are good/helpful. As is staring at something for what seems to you a long time, without allowing yourself to write, to then keep looking, and finally allow yourself to write. For me, anyway. It's like a sort of meditation on object. Quite interesting...

Background Artist said...

Let me be your reader ben. Come to my new gulag. I got booted off the guardian books blog after four months undeniably undisputed head troll, 800 pages of wind in four month, breaking through to anruth. And i have a readership now, from the grandy, who opted to Love in print here. It will be ideal for you to talk here, as it aint the one line jonts that are populated wiv trolls telling you to feck off, in a register trying to pass itself off as friendly advice.


Cailleach said...

Really, really love this, Ben - think this is the best I've seen yet.

Ben Wilkinson said...

Thanks, Barbara, you're too kind!

And Katy, glad you could drop by, I haven't seen you about the Wasteland (or the blogosphere) for a while. A Brave New World fan I am indeed: it was a book I was mildly obsessed with all through my A Levels, as having read Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale for my first AS exam, I went on a reading spree through the world of dystopian fiction.

Do you prefer it to Orwell's 1984? After all, the two are often paired (I wrote a comparison of them once, as I recall), but while Orwell captures a frightening totalitarian vision of Britian through the senses and experiences of Winston (which makes it so affecting and harrowing in many ways), I think Huxley's prophetic glimpse into the future is more terrifying, mainly given its realism in that a lot of what he envisaged has and is becoming true. It's almost worse not having a character to grab hold of and sympathise with, either, Bernard and John the Savage being at either end of the spectrum, whereas Winston always seems, for all his faults, quite an ordinary sort of bloke.

Maybe I'll post something on this lot sometime :)

Katy Murr said...

I've been away, in France! But I am here, lurking about now and then. The net provides me with my near-daily intake of The Guardian, so it's just a question of whether I check blog-ness or not.

Hmmm... never actually got through 1984; I wasn't a fan of it at all. So I can't really answer your Q objectively... I read some of Orwell's Down and Out in English one day, wanted to read more of Orwell, and was severely disappointed by 1984. (This, unfortunately, is about all I can remember about my experiences of the book.) Perhaps I'll be reading A Brave New World again soon though, so maybe I'll re-try 1984 for comparison.

('A reading spree' - better than a shopping one anytime!)

The thing which really got me about Huxley's book was how the way in which the people were seperated reminded me so much of the apparent 'streaming' of high school! Apart from there was more inter-group confrontation, and less acceptance of the sectioning...

I found the way he was always (or almost always?) referred to as 'John the Savage' fantastic - you can just imagine the people trying to seperate themselves from him in every way they can, so much so that they have to continually label him 'savage'. Fantastic :D

Although I'm typically intolerant with religion, I enjoyed this poem; it's hilarious, when looking at religion sceptically.