(Re-)Living History by Georgie Lorimer

Mr M of Telford

In a break from my usual topic of National Trust properties, a good friend of mine, Georgie Lorimer, has asked me to showcase her latest publication; (Re-)Living History: songs of Appleby, a collection of short poems based on the Sir John Moore Foundation in Appleby Magna, Leicestershire.

GL Pamphlet

(Re-)Living History is a collection of poems that explores the history of Appleby Magna, a village in Leicestershire, and of the Sir John Moore Foundation, a Grade 1 listed building dating back to the 17th Century, tracing the history of human settlements in the area.

The collection was commissioned as part of a lottery grant to improve outreach to young members of society. The programme, which unfortunately ended prematurely, included a gallery opening, featuring a film to which the ‘haresteps’ poems were to be an accompaniment. Following the programme’s end, WordsmithHQ, an online creative platform and community, which publishes online and in…

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Book IV – Naked in the Snow – 2:11

And Suddenly –

like a sonic boom
clamouring across open landscape
cutting through silent cities
splitting skies
as a white hot knife edge

like lying naked in snow
in burning scrolls of snow
that blister from between the fingers
from the curve of your shape
into rivulets of perfume
tainted perfect by your taste

– there was____with the angel
_____a multitude

*

For loe, the winter is past,
the raine is ouer, and gone.

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Book III – The Artist’s Kintsukuroi – 2:10

You feathered wings like he deflowered love:
Dispassionate, cold, ugly as beauty,
Beautiful as the burgeoning pustules
Of salt-scented, red sea anemones
Blossoming from an outcrop of rock.

At night, walking back to the flat above
Your studio, it was hard not to think
Of the wire feet in jars and ampullas
Of glass eyes staring like spiders, winking
Into a blank expanse of space. The clock,

Ticking static shudders from crumpled wings,
Chimed a single syrinx for nineteen
Ravens, laid out seconds, white and bare, in
Lines, like paper-chains of pale, hand-clasped dolls.

*

My beloued spake, and said vnto me, Rise vp,
my Loue, my faire one, and come away.

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Book III – The Artist’s Kintsukuroi – 2:9

hunting for________dog foxes
ten days be________-fore Christmas

we took a_________–shortcut through
Kelham Bridge______nature plain

and there on_______-the tree line
our horses_________were stopped short

by a hart_________-unconcerned
quite pale as_______-sienna

he held eye________-contact for
perhaps a_________.minute then

ambled on_________unhindered
later a____________swan started

from the lake_______struck the wires
i only____________-heard hart song

*

My beloued is like a Roe, or a yong Hart : behold,
 he standeth behind our wall, he looketh foorth at
the windowe, shewing himselfe through the lattesse.

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Book III – The Artist’s Kintsukuroi – 2:8

it was autumn when we kissed
that first time____after one
last summer storm on the beach

hair plastered against your face
and__disfigured with sand__we
were hideous as tempests
battering into the cave

maybe if we’d stayed for more
than that moment we’d have been
trapped forever____much later

i danced a fresh edge of sea
until even the soft shush
je t’aime__je t’aime__je t’aime__left
my leaps sinking into sand

*

The voice of my beloued! behold! hee commeth leaping
vpon the mountaines, skipping vpon the hils.

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Book III – The Artist’s Kintsukuroi – 2:7

my love sleeps__slumbers cold and damp as oldstone
lacklustre as pearls long unworn
unable to even adorn the paper-frail necks of dying duchesses
my love sleeps
her perfume wearing thin as lingering whorls of incense in wood
growing less distinct with every passing hour
until i no longer know what is perfume and what is memory
held in the fragile flickering red light of the monitor

i tried to awaken her but like ice she cracked
and the face engraved into those bro
ken slates was my own
disfigured to an unreal beauty
made unrecognisable by desire or
was it hope  ?

*

I charge you, O ye daughters of Ierusalem, by
the Roes, and by the hinds of the field, that ye
stirre not vp, nor awake my loue, till she please.

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Book III – The Artist’s Kintsukuroi – 2:6

Emyr
I do remember you
even if you could not believe this painting
would ever hold any lingering truth
whilst you were still alive

the free boys still come to view your canvas
drawn like pilgrims in need of promise
still able to find your effortless
beauty beneath the witherings of pain
and wastelands

I began your face before the virus was visible
before the risible wrinkling disfigurement
etched into your emaciated skin
don’t let them call me dorian__you said__don’t let them name me after him

*

His left hand is vnder my head, and
his right hand doeth imbrace me.

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Book III – The Artist’s Kintsukuroi – 2:5

she dusted apple pies with sugar
like an avant-garde home decorator
the night before her Christmas party
powdering the picture frames
with mockeries of snow

and stases of cinnamon__cloves
stewing into softened fruit
simmered on the air
spices hot as equilibrium

when the pie was cooked and golden
we took it to the drawing room
knelt before the open fire to scoff the lot
intermittent sips of sherry slipping
like molten metal into weeping wounds

*

Stay me with flagons, comfort me
with apples, for I am sicke of loue.

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Book III – The Artist’s Kintsukuroi – 2:4

fillet slivers served on salvers
hot quails coddled in watercress
veal cutlets and roasted chilver
shrimp mousse made rich with german wine
creamed mushroom smothered chicken breasts
marzipan crowns of eglantine
trifle sponges soft with sherry
pâté with asparagus spears
salmon set in aspic jelly
a palate cleansing punch romain
sautéed carrots in rustic tiers
pomegranates and pink champagne

light-headed in the sozzled gaudy glare
of post-party night we gulped cold mauve air

*

Hee brought me to the banketting house,
and his banner ouer mee, was loue.

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Book III – The Artist’s Kintsukuroi – 2:3

Have you never settled down among the
orchard trees, striped gold with fruit and sunlight
just to wash in juices beading orb-like
from the heavy stamens of wild flowers?

These were planted trees, protected trees, cared
for by men in dungarees and polo
shirts of forest green not nature’s hollow
framework husks, stuffed raw with rot repairing.

Though I had not gone to find him there, when
he appeared through the scree, arising
like a fruit tree in the forest, frosted
with encrusting sugar, I again fell
to his warm, exotic shadow, breaking
that he might remould my embossed shell in gold.

*

As the apple tree among the trees of the wood, so is my
beloued among the sonnes. I sate downe vnder his shadow
with great delight, and his fruit was sweete to my taste.

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Book III – The Artist’s Kintsukuroi – 2:2

like that’s totes grote guy
some oily scrote
poking through the bins
will pinch that piccy
pin it to his wall
to fawn on__bender
like you’re his bird or somet
til your face blanks out
from all the kisses
voodoo ain’t it
stuff like that
this isn’t facebook
this shit’s got real
soz mate I’m unfriending you

*

As the lillie among thornes,
so 
is my loue among the daughters.

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Book II – Copper and Salt – 2:1

We folded origami flowers from
garish shades of vibrant A1 paper
laid them as bulges along the hallway
lurking like ominous frogs in the gloom
their croaks blossoming into crocuses

I Am blooming somewhere in the desert
where the water is collected in vats
stitched from interlinking panels of skin
so flimsy that unwatched they might seep dry

Your most gorgeous perfumes dripped poisonous
across the glass surface pooling the top
of our brazil-wood dresser__soaking black
the tip of that silk lily you bought for
my birthday knowing I hate to watch flowers die

*

I Am the rose of Sharon, and the lillie of the valleys.

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Book II – Copper and Salt – 1:17

more often than not Rhydian writes prose
perched on the flaking painted window sill
his legs swinging rhythms against the breeze
bare feet imprinting patterns on warmed bricks
like an echo of lost sun monologues

he pins the pages to exposed roof beams
reburdening our converted barn with
mimic birds deathly hanged on baler twine
he pins the pages to exposed roof beams
cut from cedar to clear moths from the straw

not that it really matters anymore
but before we met they say he used to
flame his pages in the hope that somewhere
words might linger burnt into the rafters

*

The beames of our house are
Cedar, and our rafters of fire.

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Book II – Copper and Salt – 1:16

Helen__you curvaceous babe you
premediaeval prima-donna
you temptress with your sultry smile
still attempting to beguile me
like a city’s born menorah
burning in our temples__Helen

Helen__oh i know your faces
your semi-royal airy grace
your practised persiflage well-versed
sickly with the taste of toffee
gluing tooth to gum__oh Helen

Helen__you who launched a thousand
ships lying topless__green with virtue
are merely maid whilst I am Queen

*

Behold, thou art faire, my beloued; yea
pleasant : also our bedde is greene.

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