Poetry

Spilt milk

I’ve seen many artists make portraits from coffee foam.

Shaping, contouring, scraping.

Letting the natural colour show underneath all that froth.

But what happens if the cup is spilt

and the liquid runs down the tablecloth

in a race to escape its confines?

Will it travel separately, several long tracks dispersing from everything they were before

yet leaving their mark on the cotton,

or will it pool together again to build up the image once more,

refined, certain, bold

to stand out

against the plain colour of its background?

Poetry

Seedlings

And why the tapping of bamboo

against stone,

to scare away the birds

as the water starts to fill?

Spilling over the sides into the sand beyond,

clotting it into mounds that crumble

as soon as they dry.

The seeds will still grow even

if they’re scattered by ruffled feathers

making a mess of the business of eating

in a public place. They may

become willowy and wild,

the berserker runs thoroughly through

their system. Their comfort. Their home.