Tuesday, 4 January 2011

Reflections on a tram ride

"...the colors are not out there in the world nor (as classical theory held) an automatic correlate of wavelength..." - Oliver Sacks - The Case of the Colorblind Painter.

We rode on the tram to the town
through the grit and the night
wrapped up in our spacious black coats;
a few of us yawned
and three of us read the free papers.

The tram rattled on through the night
until it stopped near a man who was selling kebabs;
the doors opened and closed
and the sweet smell of meat seeped swiftly inside;
brief halts were announced by mechanical voice.

I gazed at shadows and lights changing places
the face in the window was distant and dark.


  1. is the end suggestive of we becoming strangers of ourselves as the journey proceeds...hope not,

    Nice poem and nice additions here,
    Happy New Year Gwilym :)


  2. Thank you for your question Devika,
    The end asks: 'Where are the colours if they are not 'out there' in the world and not even a correlate of wavelength?' as Prof. Oliver Sachs of the Dept. of Neurology at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, New York, informs us.

  3. oh yes, it was running in my mind...the questions of our existence relative to the external world...our knowledge being limited by our ability to perceive...thanks Gwilym for the response :)


  4. A most interesting subject,and obviously more interesting than we can ever imagine. We are like rabbits in a conjuror's black hat.

  5. Yes Gwilym...depending on our attachment with the conjuror (whom i prefer to call God) and a careful detachment with the world...the black hat becomes a safe and secure place :)


  6. a good one Gwilym (I especially commend the link you have advising editors as to how to go about obtaining material from you - thems my sentiments)


Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.