Tim Craven

Tim Craven

The Year of Mania

It was exquisite   

                                                                        I’d defeated time

               A year of
            pure voltage 

                                                                        drinking on the front porch till three a.m.          

                        nine mile run at six
                                                at my desk for nine

                                    I listened exclusively to Sam Cooke on repeat

Never in my life had I said                   yes                                                            so often

        Couldn’t wait to rise from my bed each morning            until I stopped going to bed at all 

                        Afternoons                                                     I soared up to the roof
                                                                                                           to the bleach-clean sky
            started chain-smoking cigarettes

I must have fallen in love a dozen times that summer
                                                                        each more crushing than the last

   I cupped my hands                dipped them into the moonlight                retrieved flashes of silver

                                    The future stretched into forever
                                                                                    the past forgiven 

                                Nothing needed to get done                      Everything needed to get done

                                                            I could feel my eyeballs glisten

TIM CRAVEN is from Stoke-on-Trent, lives in Edinburgh and works for Manchester Metropolitan University. He has an MFA from Syracuse and a PhD from Edinburgh, which explored mental illness in Confessional poetry. His pamphlet, Lake Effect, is published by Tapsalteerie.