‘Waldeinsamkeit’ & ‘Jungle’ by Liam Porter

My second post this evening is two poems by Liam Porter from his pamphlet Waldeinsamkeit (2021) published by Nine Pens. You can purchase a copy of Liam’s pamphlet here. Taking its title from the German word which loosely translates as ‘the feeling of being alone in the woods’ these are poems rooted in nature and place. Liam is a writer, poet, and digital marketer who hopes his writing will provide an essence of calm and reflection in what is a very hectic world (Nine Pens n.d.). I hope you all enjoy the two poems I’ve chosen to share tonight:


Waldeinsamkeit

translation: the feeling of being alone in the woods

There is no map to this forest yet you stand at its edge,
whisper your way past nettle-bush, hemlock, silver birch,
into a silence thick & loud, a pressure that builds like leaf-bed.

There are dens here: skeletal & rotten, all ash & cut-root,
cicatrix upon the skin of beech & oak

& yet this does not warn you off, rather, welcomes you in,
for there must have been heat here, the dancing of wildfire.

Read these clues & continue. Hear whispers slip
through the canopy, single strings of sunrise hinting
that this shadowed woodland could soon turn to glade

where for once the dark won’t draw in & the clarity of light
won’t be too much or too soon

where at your feet, the beaten path opens up into foxglove,
honeysuckle, bluebell.


Jungle

think Leeds Fest                                           monday morning

think of tents ripped & shelled
of poles protruding like steel from bombed buildings
of black smoke & the embers of forgotten fires
of blackened nails & unwashed hair
of bodies covered in sweat & grime & rain

think Leeds Fest                                           monday morning

remove the pick-up points filled with cars
the queues of parents waiting to rescue weary teens
the heat on full & McDonald’s meals at the ready

think Leeds Fest                                            sunday evening

replace the flares of headline set
with flares that call for help
arms thrown up to basslines
with those thrown up in prayer

think Leeds Fest                                         monday morning

replace sunlit valley with ocean storm
with pair of gloves passed round every half hour
with screams when the boat hits a wave

it was never built to manage
with t-shirts soaked through, a body overboard,
your mother’s jeans stained red at the crotch

replace the exit to the car park
with a barbed wire fence
manned by riot shields & helmets
placed there to keep you in
but most importantly
keep you out

think Leeds Fest                                     monday morning

think of it for a year
think about how you never thought
your journey would finish here
yet you haven’t moved
& neither has the mud
& neither has the world


References

Nine Pens (n.d.) Liam Porter: Waldeinsamkeit [online]. Available from https://ninepens.co.uk/shop#!/products/waldeinsamkeit—liam-porter [13 April 2022]

Porter, L. (2021) Waldeinsamkeit. North Pennines: Nine Pens, 10 & 24-25

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