Mark Tarren is a poet and writer who lives on remote Norfolk Island in the South Pacific.
His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in various literary journals including The New Verse News, The Blue Nib, Poets Reading The News, Street Light Press, Spillwords Press, Tuck Magazine and Impspired Magazine. He is currently working on a collection of poetry and a novel.
Mrs Waterson’s Dream
Inside the edges of her dream in the stone — walled world across the sea of sheets, she stands beside her. She has fallen away from the branch in the moon and lives beneath the face of sleep where she holds the shape of light, within the silent migration of her heart. —— Her journey is now complete. She has come from The Border of Passing Clouds to inherit the kingdom prepared for her, from the foundation of the world. When her small hands were water, when sleep was a prayer, when her hair was a spiral staircase that cascaded over the night sky — between the stars. Inside the edges of her dream, from the foundation of the world, she stands beside her. Beneath her bare feet are pine needles and basalt — dark pebbles underwater, those incomplete stones of the past and the beginning. This is the curtain raised in her theatre of memory — in the eye of Mrs Watersons Dream. —— Rachel’s face is now framed by her unrelenting purity, the innocence of The Journeying One — the lamb that The Norfolk Winds has guided home. Her hair, now the night sky, her eyes, now the white terns, her hands returning now as water, her grief — now — as ours. This is how Mrs Waterson found her, seated on the steps of the convict hospital, at the Father’s right hand. They shared soft, unbidden words, of the memory of things we destroy forever. A small shared sacrament, never to return to that part of us — inside the edges of her dream, from the foundation of the world — before our hearts were broken.
The Temple Song
(For Ryuichi Sakamoto) Rain falls against the skin of a tree, the bark-water flows against, upwards and away from time towards the now and flows through the chorus of — be well, be well. Small smooth stones are rubbed together. When placed against a cymbal they hum the quiet hymn of transcendence, that speaks — be well, be well. Bach, Satie, Chopin — break bread at your table and say — here, take and eat hear this sound, take this chord it says — be well, be well. Kakinomoto no Hitomaro, Matsuo Bashō, Fujiwara no Teika — lean forward into the now and scribe these words on the score of your body — be well, be well. Now, outside the temple song, in the shape of the master, a leaf has fallen inside your graceful hands. It plays the notes it sings, it prays forever — be well, be well.