Winner of the Glebe House Harmony Trust
poetry competition 2015
In dreams, I am often a child again.
In reality, I tug at my fantasies,
trying to strap them down
against the sides of life;
pull the centres towards each other,
to create an object akin to life.
It teeters for a moment
then drops away from me.
I'm always on the wrong side of the see-saw.
Yet, it isn’t the merry-go-round,
looking for balance, or the swings,
oscillating towards inertia.
When the pendulum stops,
the ride is over, the park closes,
then I and my counterweights
camp under the stars until opening time.
I'm hydrogen dreaming of helium,
knowing that sun and gravity will come.
Sleep, Perchance to Dream!
from Dodging The Rain, May '17
If a dream is only
the mind’s way of staying busy
while the body rests,
then let me entertain myself
with thoughts of duvets
and pillows, the simple luxury
of laying my day down
on a shower of fresh cotton.
And if you tell me that dreams
are the subconscious voice
taking the chance to speak up
while everything else sleeps,
let me tell you then that I must have
a king-sized ego, memory foam id,
and that sleep is my default
critical thought function.
from 'Traginares', Origami Poetry Project, Jan '18
Three gulls, half a mile inland,
exploring a field. Nothing here, but
half an acre over, a herd of sheep
question the wind. A foal
finds a three-foot shelter,
knowing its trough is too far away.
The land is blind to the sea:
old bathtubs stand in for rivers,
a whitewashed brick hut
stands like an intruder. Fields narrow.
The day is still, sand and rock
a hundred perches for birds.
Somewhere through the marshes,
our train pretends to be their master.
from Southword Journal, Issue 30, Jul '16
The first crack is a misplaced key
against the symphony’s roundness,
liberating crunch, bringing malleable edges
to a fortress of geometry,
finding crease in the pool surface,
rippling throughout all degrees.
Take away the tawny layer
to let white ring out: remove fawn,
tan, beige and taupe, mushroom rainbow
arcing out, fibrin strips
arched between fingers.
Ungloved, it is a perfect marble:
pick it clean of hard spots,
tiny triangles of candied remains;
a sugar-coated almond sucked clear,
rubbery boiled bubble of odd flesh.
from 'Dōji: A Blunder'
Dōji truffled out a corpse;
he knew nothing
of limbs, of lungs, of brain.
He saw a puppet,
so Dōji picked at the stuffing
and pawed out innards
onto the soil.
Mud was formed
from thick remnants of bladder-spill
and intestinal slop.
The earth grew warm from the foraging.
Dōji poked his head into the shell
the rain came, as Dōji pecked and clawed,
fitting the skin over him.
He could breathe,
he could move,
he was dry and could not be seen.
he had found a new game.
Winner, EditRed.Com 2006 Writer’s Choice Award for Poetry
Perhaps a string of kisses would drape
the tender nape
of your stretching neck
an auburn pillow;
perhaps we could turn to yellow
in this crystal sunrise,
a golden nest around our bed
praising the wisdom
of our slumber;
perhaps the world will thunder
this pellucid girl and boy;
caught adrift their morning love:
the deep embrace of each other;
perhaps they could be lovers.