Poetry

Despair

The photograph shows a cottage, half-built,

support beams visible before the thatch.

I touch them and feel my bones vibrate,

wounds opening up all over my body.

 

Tears run from them, not blood

 

and from the cottage, through the paper to my ears,

comes the shrill whistle of a kettle.

I remember. She always offered me tea.

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.

Poetry

Sweet almond paste

You pop it into my mouth, expecting

me to savour the taste

as it melts on my tongue.

It’s pleasant, yes, but the sweetness

is just that little bit too sweet,

almost spoiling the rest.

 

The day you took those photographs,

you said I looked sweet.

Was I over sweet?

Your smile was never true after that,

as though suddenly you’d seen more

than you were hoping for

but were still left disappointed.

 

The paste in my mouth has completely

broken down now.

Just like my image of you.