Monday Night Yoga

Winter’s coming

And it’s been a decade

Of powdered snow deep on sleeping soil

Pink light fills the space around my eyes

and I’m inside an oyster

Pale geese framed in spun sugar buoyed by luminous green

My limbs stretch and harden

The room is filled with sun like amber ale,

The edges softened by bubbles of glinting gold

I soften and drape

I’m back in that dappled cove beneath your chin

Drapes of turpentine, eyes of ash

A knotted bulb I’ve had tucked in my back pocket these years long

I close my eyes against the magenta kaleidoscope 

Ribs expanding, contracting

This life I’ve filled apart from you

The warm yolk slips 

And skies of lavender are muted

By a shadowed cloak 

A single goose shouts into the rising night

The boards beneath my back become yellowing grass, carpets of pine, smooth rocks warmed in the sun

All the places this body lay with you

These trips around the sun shorten and morph

Five million minutes filled with growth and buds

Decay and the shedding of those turning leaves

My tight shut eyes open to an absence of impression

A coolness in this day’s death

Winter’s coming 

And I’m lying on a yoga mat remembering you

Fireworks (Remix)

One day I’ll hold you
Warm and close like my 21st
Summer, that quiet foreign
Night, gazing up at the minaret
I’ll smoke, find communion with all I can
Hear but not see, and I close my lies,
Fireworks decorating my inner galaxy;
Outside is cold and loveless
And inside isn’t always any better, but
I’ll find you there, you’ll wear my sweater,
Listen, I will see you soon, but first I go
To the desert of this dying moon, learn all
The lessons I have to learn:
Memories are worlds and I’ve seen plenty
As they colour the girls and the faces as
They bent me and remind me to hold on,
Cry into my shoulder, we nurse our hearts
Crying growing older,
Cry.

Without You

I’m lying here where your brittled form lay curled and breathing not so long ago. Your skin turned sour and your voice too soft. I held your fingers and turned away from you folding in upon yourself. Breath held and eyes swimming, open upon a ceiling of smooth meringue. A collapsing seed planted in a mound of smooth white linen. It’s been an entire year upon this salted tide, the cold water that rushed in to fill the depression in your half of the mattress. Everything else undisturbed; a brown bottle of hand cream, a cabinet of pills, a closet of clothes. That moment every time I open your front door and feel a catch in my throat as I realize the voice I’m hearing is only between my ears.

You forgot Luca’s name in the hospital, that final time. Called him by another. How it ravages me to think of you in that hospital bed, a fresh nightgown daily from your dutiful husband. Being spoon fed soup until you fell asleep. Lips slack, face yellowing. Those words that dropped out of your mouth as my father made the statement “you’re standing on the edge of a brand new adventure”, your cloudy eyes wide, your face sincere, “I really am, Pete”.

And then those horrific days where you remained. Slipping, slipping. Ever smaller amongst those pillows until you disappeared altogether. A piece of driftwood where a great oak had stood. 

The family knit themselves together over you, a blanket of hands and hearts to try to keep you warm that early autumn day.

Now this baby like fresh risen dough sleeping where you should be. Draped with a forest green knit that still smells of you. Toes like podded peas poking through.

Ne Me Quitte Pas

This concrete shrinks each evening,
The sky’s no longer streaming
And my dreams have been bleeding
Together with you in unending
Farewell

The garden-beds lay flat with bitter shame
As crestfallen chlorophyll fades into sorry brown,
The cobbled pathways feel an empty same,
Leading to the faded hue of
this wretched town,

That shamrock breeze that shook
My trees and scattered my fruit on shallow roots,
Picks me up, and from me took
That contented cup that it
so graciously filled

This coronary carrousel that spun and swayed
Our hearts away from the bitter daze
And confusion of moonlit touch,
Has blown its fuse and twirled its last

Round and round
with unholy pasts.

What we left in the sand

I tried to sync our breathing on the dunes
As the sky split and you shone amber apricot,
But the climb left us both gasping
In our own private oceans.

I tried to find where the creases
Of your eyes ended
And the gentle contours of sand began
As you laid your head back against my chest.

I stroked your cheek and pulled
Your gaze away from that
Bright bubbling rainbow-seized disk
Just for a moment
To rub our red tingling noses together.

I know you despised me for trying
And failing
To put words to this moment,
Mumbling some faint reply
That felt more like an obligation.

I rolled down and the earth began to oscillate
And I couldn’t find you for a second;
You seemed to be anywhere else
But under my gaze.

You marched down, caught somewhere
Between astronaut and primordial desert dromadaire
In that camouflaged wool,
Bringing forth great plumes of dust and creation with every unearthed footstep,
Saying “Maybe they left without us.”
They hadn’t, of course,

But I understood.

Failing you, my loves

Resentment pooling

Babies drooling

My last nerve spooling on a finite thread

Who am I fooling?

It’s not my calling 

I’m falling, failing, where is my head

 

My teeth are grinding 

On this ring-tight binding

And I keep finding a pinching dread

This endless minding

I’m forever pining

For solitude from whining, an empty bed 

 

The moon is waning 

Upon these sheets you’re staining

I’m entertaining thoughts of rest

Morning’s gaining

Nipples aching

Guilted grief weighing, down on my chest

Please stop crying

Fuck’s sake I’m dying

Two defying children atop my breast

I’m not denying

It’s your childhoods I’m defining 

I am your mother, but I don’t know best

Sunlight

Am I going mad?

Or is it this deepening fog

That’s left me just a slice of an unsmudged person

Pillars, towers, a fortress of fungi have filled the space between my ears

And like a malfunctioning VCR I spit out the same words ad infinitum 

‘No!’ ‘Stop!’ ‘Come here!’ ‘Eat your dinner!’

My teeth grinding, pupils swimming on this endless bad trip 

Anxiety and sleep deprivation, like a virgin user this shimmering, gelatinous wall passes over me

I shiver in that peaking instant, my eyes fixed on a yellow bar of venetian light

Hazel-green ringed in red

Fingers tipped in sticky yolk,

My body creaks and spills from its cordless robe,

A collar of fingerprinted vegemite

I am Gulliver trapped and pinned

Swaying under the arms and legs of tiny people conquering me like a mountain

Pulling skin and plucking hairs 

Sampling a smorgasbord of human tortures

The sludge of dormant fury grows hot in my capillaries 

Close.your.eyes.

(Can I ever close my eyes?)

Flurries of dust catch fire 

Paint flakes off in sheets 

The light never stops fucking streaming 

Fertility

Fertility, Fertility, Fertility,
Fertility, Fertility, Fertility,
Fertility, Fertility, Woe is me,

The one who dwells between your knees.
Hold me squeeze at the heart of the seed
That flows freely where tongues have no keys
Where the answer is blowing through the trees,
Rustle the right way my dearest, please,
And fill these graham crackers with your
Marshmallow sweets and come with me,
Not once, but infinity

Fertility, Fertility,

The atmosphere embedded with a thousand
Latent pregnancies that tease at the heart
Of the ancient graveyard galaxies, you don’t need
A map for these, You feel your way with that great
Hairy millipede chest that seems to rest
So peacefully until it gets a nibble of that foul
Fleshy fantasy, abandons me for some
Almond-filled pastry,

Fertility, Fertility,

Did you find what you were looking for
Sailing overseas?
Did it look a little different than your
Favourite movies?
Did it sneeze down the throat of your
$10 smoothie?
Could you match the tone of its
Mangled Cantonese, or did you merely
Find the limits
Of your own abilities?

Fertility, Fertility

Come walk with me, let’s toss aside the mantras
And the peppermint tea, for we both know
That neither help you sleep these
Days when the brown speckled wings and the slow
Buddhist streams only seem to anger thee, and
Let us look upon our ministry, that three legged
Mouth to feed, where the fox jumps over
The path we lead, for it’s cracked and bleeds
From a punctured bruise we hide between
Our teeth,
But I know there must be a melody.
A chance to leave this all behind and leap
Into a reality far beyond this failed
Dance we breed,

Fertility, Fertility, Fertility come with me.

Nothing is as it should be; Everything is alright

I am a dark-feathered duck,
Back to the current,
Blinded to where it all leads
But content to sit in its lap.

I know that you are waiting
Across the other side,
And our no-reception phone-calls sound like Satan
Bleating down the line,

But give it time, I’m sure you’ll see
That I’ll wait for you and you for me,
And we will stand among these trees,
Roots tied together with hearts set free.

But, yes, for now we lie in prisons,
These great iron bars blocking our vision,
And every “Bonne nuit” feels like an incision
Into our troubled minds.

Excuse me please, for these brief reprieves
Where I must leave your soul
For my selfish seas, oceans
Receding, my sentinels retreating
And I am submitting to your endless grace

Breaking through the clouds
With the elegance of a plow
After winter when the wombats come out,
Shake their twitching snouts and find a way to live,

To thrive, to let this rhyme wander,
For I can no longer ponder
The form before the meaning
The storm before the lightning,

My chest is tightening, strapped to a jet-pack
And fuck the city I’m not coming back,
Human? Or consume and be done with the rest,
Surely this is not the best that we can do,

The point that we can prove:
That we’re not made of metal
That we beat and we bruise
And we’re not going to settle

For well-trodden paths with
Success charted on graphs,
And if I must leave my degree
To come and see, then so be it,

I’d rather roam than sit
Or Paris or Morocco
Or any and all of it,
Let’s pack our cosmic van and go,

And if we end up broke,
Choking on our indiscretions
‘Tis better to have lived in debt
Than by their moral lessons.

But,
That cool stream caressing now,
Rolling off of my back and into my bowels;
The devil’s undressing, the rapids are rushing
As I am waiting for my earth to give way.

Bon Anniversaire

We take the last light minutes for ourselves

A canoe dipping and skimming across oil slick waters

A chorus line of fish leap into the air around us

And I wonder if we’ve forgotten the words to this love song

It’s eight o clock and there’s a bonfire on the shore mirroring a nectarine sky

My salt wet fingers cling loose to the paddle

And I let you push us out where the lake runs deep

The silence nestles around us and it’s been four years

Since that blistering afternoon where you wept to a crowd and we cut a tall snowy cake to symbolize a togetherness we have forgotten 

Darkness descends like smoke filling a room

We turn to see home lights glisten amongst the bluegums

Tranquility betrayed by a maelstrom within

Of tiny arms needing tinier sleeves 

An aviary of squawks and gummy smiles, pink cheeks relentlessly pressed against warm chests

How long has it been since it was just you and I?

Surrounding us, the piercing call of a thousand cicadas rises out of the quiet, one last encore before the encroaching night

I look back at you, water droplets clinging to your freckles and my hand stretches to brush your knee

You cease your solo efforts and we drift slow

Swallows swoop, a lone jellyfish like spun sugar is pulled along in our wake 

I murmur my dreams to you, a tremulous excitement like the ripples we cast out 

We nose the bank gently, the satin of a horse nuzzling for an apple 

Your lips brush my cheek as I stumble onto the grass 

There is love here for us still