Northern Lights – May 2020

Catherine Heath

May 2020

So many men

Are afraid to explore––

Afraid to enter the world

(Still tied to mother’s apron strings)

Or hiding in their basements;

The electric crackle

Of circuit boards and LEDs

More fulfilling

Than the soft touch of her skin. 

Why is there so much hatred?

The war that’s been fought for ages,

Over brawn

And beauty,

Still rages.

The battle of the sexes

Is no man’s land

(Flanked by barbed wire,

With shells

Thundering to the earth).

Only a fool would try to cross–– 

(And the truth will break your heart)

So we’d better learn the easy way.

I hadn’t given up;

I was distracted

By stars and planets––


In eternity. 

But when the cold wind starts to rise,

I want you by my side.

Life is so much more than this––

What is the point in reading books

If we don’t break ourselves,

And find the limits of infinity?

Instead of searching,

And groping through the darkness,

Through the smoke,

And flames,

And screams,

We drape ourselves in chains

Of dead moral eras,

Because the burden of freedom

Is too heavy to bear––

But we rebel

Under the trees in my garden

Where we are mounting the resistance





And tea––

Just the way it should be)

Since we are creating our own community.

We hope this time will never end––

This time with our neighbours,

And our friends.

We are right here,

And everywhere––

So let them all stare

(Cutting hair in the garden;

Acrobatics were a mistake,

But we found the people who were fake,

And left them in the shade).

Who cares about dying,

When so many people are lying

Alone in their rooms 

(Or through their teeth)?

It’s nothing like we thought it would be,

Compared to what we read in books.

And so we’ll keep looking––

We won’t settle,

And life may test our mettle,

But strife makes you,

And pain makes me. 

Floating through life,

A leaf on the breeze––

See where the wind takes me.

A snow-capped mountain,

Or clear forest pool;

I know I will still get to you

(We are not alone;

We were always two).

Tear off your chains

Then stagger through barbed wire,

And the mud,

Until the metal rips your skin,

And the blood 

Splashes on the earth,

Nourishing the soil

With your passion

And your grace,

And you cannot see a thing.

Be all alone in the world;

A man on top of a mountain,

Hunting through the forest,

Stalking a deer,

Hiding silently,

Until she lets you draw near.

Piss off everyone,

Until they’re calling for your head––

Don’t stop until you’re dead,

Because the treasure is at the end of the rainbow–– 

(She always was).

Read children’s books,

And hope for salvation;

Twin souls calling out across the cosmos––

Forever entwined

With mystical thread

Spun from tears,


And pain. 

A maturity beyond her years

Shows you she’s the one

(She’s also pissed off everyone).

We were one soul,

Ripped asunder

To save the world

(He was just a boy,

And she, a girl––

That’s why we don’t care

When people stare,

Because we are right at home,

Where we always ought to be).

Adventures in the country,

Stung by nettles

And infuriated by streams

Soaking my boots,

Making me a fool

(I didn’t want to look at you,

For I know

I cannot look away).

Sitting on the train to Yorkshire,

Staring out at cows and fields––

Is this the only thing that’s real?

Surely the suits

And hipsters of London

Are nothing more than a mirage,

Designed to trap young souls

In a hell

Of mortgages,


And kids.

There was no single thing we did.

A gentle touch in the back of a taxi;

Alcohol means we’re 

Wild and free

(Maybe what she wanted all along

Was to listen to that very same song

About hospitals and pills,

Which were to feature strongly

In our future).

The wonder years

Are the time we spent together,

Forever lying in the heather––

Dabbing dock leaves on the stings––

Laughing hard at everything,

Because we’ve finally found

True love,

And now,

We sing.

Credit: Photo by Matt Houghton on Unsplash