22 October 2010

block splitter

this is the block
that i split
black is the mark
where the blade hit

where violence
released beauty
and the grain
whose duty

is to carry
the water
from the bottom
like a porter

to the top
and the leaves
but not now
and it grieves

me a little
that my warm fire
means that this tree
will no longer transpire

19 October 2009

holding hands

you cannot do
any more than this:
let the earth hold you

when you feel the soil
the sticks the stones
the grass
under heel and
between toes
you know you are held

i am the earth
i hold you
in an open hand
my valleys and hills
guide your way

your family and friends
they are the earth
let them hold you

when you feel the embrace
the cuddles the kisses
the hands
within hands
between eyes
you know you are held

i am your husband
i hold you
with an open heart
my love will
guide your way

life had worked out

there was no resentment
from the others
even though
they had taken
a harder path

they were happy for me
that life had worked out
i was married
settled

they were my brothers
my sister
they looked like me
and i felt guilty
that i had taken
an easier path

my adoptive mum was there
and we all chatted

now i have two families
and i could see
that for each of us
life had worked out

hard rubbish collection

there is
out the front
of every house
a public display
a mini-monument
of wastefulness

washers dryers fridges
everything must go
to
waste

and no-one
seems to show
one ounce
of regret
of shame
of embarrassment

yes
we deliver
gleaming white appliances
direct from the shop
to
a hole in the ground

now
it is time
to repair
what we have broken
to share
what we don't need

emergency contact

on a form
for a fun run
i wrote down
all the usual
name
address
date of birth

i rushed through it
male
open
category
thirty
seven
dollars

then i stopped

after being alive
for thirty-two years
after going out with you
for two and a half
and after a few seconds' pause
for the first time
but not for the last
i write your name
as my
emergency
contact

07 February 2009

where things come together

a sea breeze will come
and lift your face
into a smile

and while
you're searching
for the point

on the horizon
where things
come together

hold hands
be peaceful
this is the way to go

19 November 2008

paper weight

bundle up the burdens
of the world
and use them
as a paper weight

prop open the door
with your worries
and let the breeze
dance on your skin

when your mood lifts
the papers flutter and fly
and you go out
after them

21 October 2008

shady cloud

if i re-arranged the clouds
would you notice?
would you say
hey, that wasn't there
or wouldn't you care?

if gravity was reversed
and you fell into the sky
a fluffy cloud caught you
would you wonder why?

if gravity got stronger
and you melted to the ground
and when you evaporated
would you hang around?

like a cloud that hovered
and resisted the wind
or maybe you
couldn't be bothered?

but if you stayed
there'd be this little
bit of shade and
i'd stand under you

28 June 2007

you don’t have to be here

lie flat
on a rolled out mat
count the thoughts
floating and gloating
cause you haven’t found
the knack to bring them back
to the room
the heart
of where
you
are

yoga is tricky
with a mat
still sticky
from the last class
and dates and times
a bloody calendar
climbs into the front seat
of your consciousness

your thoughts will be
fine without you
open the door
let them tumble out
if they’re worthwhile
there’s no doubt
you’ll see them
again

and then
when you’re
all alone
just your body
left behind
you might find
something
amazing

22 June 2007

the longest night

the little girl sat by the window
watching the rain coming down
she wanted the drops to stop dripping
because she needed to run around

dad had said “it’s too wet outside
just play with your toys in here”
but she went back to the window
and waited for the clouds to disappear

she waited and waited
and then she waited some more
the cold air whistled
as it blew underneath the door

and then it got dark, really dark
maybe there’d be a storm
her dad hadn’t even noticed
because he was keeping warm

all curled up like a cat on the couch
with the heater going strong
he was just about to nod off
when she asked him “dad what’s wrong

with the sun?
where has it gone?” she said
“it’s only five o’clock,
it’s already gone to bed?”

“um well er y’know ah”
he didn’t know what to say
but he looked down at the newspaper
and read: “today is the shortest day”

which means, he thought,
that tonight is the longest night
“young lady” he smiled
“everything’ll be alright”

they put on their boots and their coats
and her dad held her hand
they walked out the door
and across the open land

phwoar it was cold
it was absolutely freezing
before too long
they were shivering and sneezing

but they had big smiles
frozen on their faces
and probably just to keep warm
they quickened up their paces

then they heard voices
coming out of the dark
and above the roof of the school
they saw a single spark

rise slowly
until it was so high
it had joined with all the stars
way up in the sky

around the back of the school
there were people standing around
they had a roaring fire
and they were stomping on the ground

the girl and her dad
joined in the happy group
someone gave her a hunk of bread
and a mug steaming of soup

it was warming up her tummy
phwoar that hit the spot!
the fire made her cheeks go red
she was really getting hot

she took a few steps back
just to cool her body down
and saw that all her friends were there
and they were running around

her dad was chatting with his mates
just keeping her in sight
and that’s really all that happened
on the night of the longest night