Thursday, September 17, 2009

Harmonic Points

One metre is one ten-millionth
of the distance from the Equator
to the North Pole through Paris

This is a useful measurement

Then there is the truth of ratios:
a bird’s wingspan to a room,
the opening in the window
it entered through, then lost.
The weight of a pair of hands
trying to free it. There is the lonely
side of dialogue. The pieces
of the map and the ground
covered by your body when you fall.
The cleverness you trail like
a comet. The circus and the flea.
Edson’s ambushed stone to
the size of his mother’s love. Some
giddy slippage, to all the harmonic
points on a line to infinity.
The curved eyeball to the keyhole
of the hostage, then, the walls of
the captive. Lullaby of bedrock
to all it cradles. The hollow
of your hand to what I would fill
it with. The rose and what rose.
There’s writing on both sides
of the paper. The sensation
of speaking in tongues. All those
centred deities of blind voyeurs
to the spectrum of a single note.
The other side of the river to
a fish. Totems and guttered stars.
Death, ash, fire, warmth and smoke.
A forced song of almost someone
in so many breaths, there is also this:

Made flesh: what I take in
from what was said.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Winged Things

Once you give something
wings you have to treat it differently
because the bones are hollow-
just the heat coming off your neck up close
might cause an updraft that could send it higher
than the sound of our breathing, past
the fist-shaped clouds and their drizzle
past the pelicans and stars

There was an address written on her palm
that’s been smeared by yours
She can’t remember giving you the keys
You can’t remember locking up the house

Every other word here is the possessive you both lack
each day is its’ consequence

You’re driving through the night with her head
on your thigh
her white hand on your knee
into the pink morning where the world is all
keys and keyholes
where there’s roadhouse coffee and a quiet
place near a dry creek bed to do things
with mouths other than speaking

Billions of eyes have slept through this
With no sleep to wake from
yours can’t see past it
It’s been days since she’s taken the steering wheel
She says movement is her only peace
opening the window

You draw a concentric circle around her
to see what gathers outside
Sweep up your tracks behind you
keep them in the glove box with the maps

At the appearance of heat puddles
ahead in the middle of the road
you sing her bridges of outlined plans
knowing she is calmed
by the weight of your intention

You use fuzzy words
because the clear ones are all being used
back at the supermarket and the primary school
and you know her ears are tired of them

Over and over you look at each other
hardly recognising yourselves in this heat
You stop the car, lean over to kiss her in the centre
of her chest, she untangles her sunburnt legs
from the dashboard and smiles a distance
you can’t turn back from

A billion birds perched in the clouds look down
and are blinded by the glare from the windscreen

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Vasilissa's Doll

I am the house and the hut with chicken legs that turns to face us.
I am the sea cave speared through by the foundations of skyscrapers.
The glitter and shine of bare bones,
the scaffolding and crane, the tented buildings,
the outskirts of the forest with trees bent like ribs.
Strange enough without shadows.

Here I am, one hand in yours, the other searching for skeleton keys
in the soft cloth of her unwritten pocket. Private finger cave
of receipts, crumbs, stones and small change. Here is
the dull-eyed doll who comes to life at night,
feeding my cheeks of milk and blood
as my hair grows down to my waist.

I like to tell you this story, you, keeper of water and all
the paths it makes when trapped, bent forward in your chair
like the red rider, have asked me to close my eyes and feel
the quiver, Saraha haha.
I laugh, I know you’re winging it.

This is grown in the dark too, in the chambers of involuntary muscle
and it will go one way or another. I am picking
the black grains from the wheat.
When you tap me on the shoulder I turn
to nothing

Wednesday, September 2, 2009



This peninsula
where the river enters
where the earth disappears
where moths and fish gather at
the light, where we swim
into each other, braced
in the sea cradle
in the rock

where the song breaks, here
the rolling lull of tongue,
where the water curves back
into itself        and again
the salted liquid
and sprays, so unlike
where we sink in
where we make room


Where there is
always a chance of being
misheard, like all things driven
through air        by wind
whole words might not reach
                their destination

Washed, still, dry and done with
our bodies, against
        the width of air
              alone with
our bodies, where

        Enclosed within-
our breath, to not
blow out candles
or feed fires