Poetry

Age Rings

My age is shown in armoured plates,

shells coating my body. Each one no thicker

than a single hair and full of patch jobs

from nicks and scrapes I’ve received

clawing my way here through thorned words,

cactus remarks, daggers thrown at me with a single look.

Sometimes, not even I can remember who I am underneath,

and I know I would feel naked if I stripped them back.

But that lemon juice you offer is so fresh.

Poetry

Stamps

How many times can you see a shadow,

the same shadow, in a day?

Different people, different stance, different persona

stamped with the shadow,

followed, tied, a trail of darkness

pulling faces at the world

while getting trampled on.

Unnoticed. Invisible. Despite

its clear lines.

Poetry

Opaque

What’s in a shadow? Can we

take it apart, unzip it and spill

its innards on the ground?

Do you think there’ll be bits of memory,

chunks of ourselves that we’ve tried to bury?

You say a shadow is just a space

that the light can’t get to.

That’s what I mean. If

we bury something, light can’t

get to it. You might be right. I

might be, too.

Poetry

Berry Scrumping

We gather them nightly,

lip-smacking juices running down my chin.

You look like a vampire

you say, equally so.

We laugh as the moon cackles down at us

and goose pimples rise

up over our exposed skin.

 

On our way home,

hands weaved together, close,

more support than affection,

you slip your mask back over your face

hiding the pinkish stains from the world.

Hiding our sweet indulgence

even from  yourself.

 

 

Poetry

Bird watching

The birds feed from my open palms.

Sometimes they land on my head and pull

cheekily

at my hair or

search for worms in the creases of my dress.

Cars bleating along the highway

scare them away, but they always come back.

The police sirens are the worst, five or six in a row

at times.

You’d think

with so many about,

that one of them would have found me by now.

I hope they do soon

while there’s still something left of me

to find.

Poetry

The fee for crossing

The oil paint stains his fingers.

Thick, congealed blood

two different shades of green.

One

for the tree,

one

for the reflection of the tree

on the wavering lake. Just

where that photograph of me

was taken.

It’s too dark to see me now,

but if you felt

around the pine needles,

you’d find cool metal coins,

two of them,

which I’d promised

to balance on my eyelids.