Wild things

drinking in wild things and light
everything the colour of cymbals
urging winter into memory ground

ink of the first geranium
anthem bursting in rhythm
of sweeping daylight

rituals from the roots
of melody born
in vines the shape of longing

enough to hear the shade
pressed between quivering leaves
thoughts still wild and ripe and free

A thousand dreams of blue

In a thousand dreams of blue,
over and over,
strummed by sandwiched sea and sky,
gull-clear and even-tempered
valves of light announce a melody.
Everything under-wing, this worship
of waves, whose art
is never letting go.
And somewhere, sometime
astir between despair and hope
plucks out the firmament
into a dazzling array
away from its short monochrome,
you announce yourself
the very definition of azure.


The young man should not look others in the mirror,
for some it means stretching down towards a fate
wizened or withered, bending as well as porcelain.

Or is it watching oranges and lemons plummet
from branches bending nearer autumn
as grey waves swoop away promise of distant lands?

But these are shores and drops the old man
lingering over the nectar of decades
has seen and known and stumbled over.

So the still young look on regardless,
towards tomorrow’s glassy valleys and Byzantium

much as the berg calves itself into the ocean,
the rift, so far, a thin hope for charting life.

Andante days

Where are the andante days of spring,
where gone their watercolor glow?
For now all leaves pass maple brown
while minds run glazed by snow.

The lanes soon grey and smooth with noise
of gusts rushing in to break
some sediment of yesterday
that these chill months cannot slake.

And yet the year leaps on anew
as full heart-heavy times can’t last
more than a lulling interlude
knows soon these skies will have passed.

Foraging for stars

Cutting up the sky to reinvent the earth,
in some small way, would be like plucking a star
from its socket, endarkening a nest of stories.

Their blazing path peeled clean away
dips the ordered life out of joint, amiss.
Can’t you have that too, the dream made flesh: this?

Must it always keep diving back under the dark surface
into escaping orbit, far and slippery beyond your touch?
All the while you wonder rivulets and speak so much

your eyes wishing myths might breathe again, for once,
for the first time, your mouth and lips testing
the bruise of these soft syllables, foraging for stars.

Random Objects

Begin here an unfilled lyric,
much like a city has walls we can no more see
than the quiet pillars of the mind,
barricades that need dismantling.

Only when we clear away
a confusion of souvenirs and sorrows is there
sign of grassland new,
canvassed by some unplanned design.

See how the years bear little relics
proving somehow that nothing gathered can be lost
against your will, only laid aside or reassigned
behind those spaces even dust won’t go.

Look: I’ve laid it out for you,
all the scattered pieces fallen and askew
sound confused and beg for naming
but I refuse to give the eyeless voices,

So I try again to make a list
but I’m falling short and open.
The scattering and the toppled props
reward me with disdain unless

I try once more to sort and ease
away now more than memories. Then hope
arrives and I object: O life, that leaves
us grasping for these walls to fold.

The Leaves that Fall on Dreams

It’s how the light falls
On picture frame or dark glass,
The potter’s floss of words
Or memory’s discarded stash.

A sudden glimpse that fracture makes:
This is where I try again,
Where the leaves that fall on dreams
Sway on instead, enjoin their soundless song.

Day-talk breathes less than promises.
But it’s how the light speaks
Back to us instead, between breaths
Of endless time.

(16 March 2016)

I, Too, Wonder

Looking ever forward we become lost
Within the glare of this blazing world,
Ignore its floating eyes, sun and moon.

We yearn for lusher greens,
Promise of distant pages where
Our odyssey might breed perfection

Forgetting our self-grown words should
Sing their colours, instead muted by
These splendid denials.

Rotate as the earth does and
Spinning inwards look
Only to improve, improve, improve

Until we cannot stand and
Lose our centre tripping blindly
On all the promised tomorrows.
(7 May 2015)

We keep asking

While three or four each child
adores to paint with why:
to splatter parents crimson-wild
till fury stuns the deep well dry
where mysteries are locked and filed
heeding Poe’s raven’s senseless cry.

Their dim amusement grows then wanes
as eyes shift from glaring windowpanes
to shield when asked not “what” instead
that question they have forced to bed
so curdled by their childhood years
knowing only “why” will lead to tears.

So this poem offers no solutions
only wanders amidst pale confusions
it diverges even as you read
to serve one purpose: simply plead
that when that question does arise
you’ll ensure its swift reprise.
(2 May 2015)

A short paean* (28-29 November)

What gives me hope?
So many things that lift me up,
Brush away despair’s cobwebbed shades.
Innocence, eyes that have not yet perhaps
Become clouded over by the darkened shades
Of life’s miseries.

Hope carries us everywhere,
Leaves us
Like a sad farewell
Where there can be
No second meeting.

Still I look to the stars,
Turn my eyes away from their gaze
And hold out
For the regeneration of
New life.

I can wait
In hope.

*This is a short piece I composed during our lunchtime writers’ meet-up. If this poem is a little rough at least our meet-up went (seemingly) really well. Because I was running around I only had about four or five minutes to write. Must do something about that in the future.
But I hope something comes from it (yes, a hope reference, I know), that it grows and keeps growing.