I ... entered the poem of life, whose purpose is ... simply to witness the beauties of the world,
to discover the many forms that love can take. (Barabara Blackman in 'Glass After Glass')


These poems are works in progress, and may be subject to revision without notice. Completed versions appear in my books. Nevertheless copyright applies to all texts found here.

30 September 2011

Hot windy day: Tanka for September 2011

blue-green waves
framed on the Courthouse wall
sequinned fish
in symmetrical rows
Young Offenders’ Program

5/9/11



farewelled
my visiting son
tearful
as silly mothers are
as mine was with me

6/9/11



these geraniums
started from a cutting
have come with me
from house to rented house
always making me smile

geraniums
cheery plants and hardy
blooming bright
remind me of my Dad
so very fond of them

over the way
children are singing
a schoolyard chant
on this peaceful day
children are laughing

on this date
forty-four years ago
I had been
a brand-new mother
for one whole day

closing my eyes
I lean against a post
almost nod off
until a smell of rain
sharpens the lazy air

13/911



hot windy day
the fire haze in the sky
thankfully old
from far north of here
chilling reminder

20/9/11



Those coils on my lawn —
brown snake or diamond python?
Live snake or shed skin?
Deceives me every time,
that twisting, exposed tree root.

27/9/11



I was four
she was white and strange
my Nana
in that hospital bed
I refused the last hug

29/9/11

He strokes my hair: September haiku 2011

cold rain
visitor arriving soon
for the sun

2/9/11



blessed boredom
the opposite of
a Chinese curse

7/9/11
(in response to a challenge
to write a ‘boredom’ haiku)



he strokes my hair:  
‘sleep now,
and in the morning ...’

10/9/11



peaceful
blue evening
windless

three-quarter moon
low in the sky
one star

the little street
sleeps
behind curtains

16/9/11



reading your poems
I hear gamelan music
and miss Bali

24/9/11



while I sleep
on the other side of the world
new haiku




   ******

I wake and find
new haiku on facebook
spring blossoms

27/9/11



Friday. Eye test.
Pay bills, shop, urgent phone calls.
Haiku, whats that?

30/9/11

Turning 30

I recall now, bemused,
the unwonted depression I sank into 
around the issue of turning 30 —
a trauma which, at the time, seemed huge.

The only depression I’ve ever known,
it started six months before
the momentous event, and lasted
a further six months after.

I can’t get back in the head of that girl.
What did she so dread? It was like
the demarcation point of age for her.
Too many pop songs, perhaps!

It was after all, also, the end of the sixties,
that perfect time to be 
if not teenage, still young enough.
Suddenly it was all over.

There she was, with both her children
already born and no more planned.
Girlhood and fertility both behind her.
Nothing but matronhood left.

Silly girl, she didn’t know
that in her 30s she would be ripe and juicy
emitting a glow. Nor that the secret scribblings
would demand to be valued and aired.

I look back, and yes, I think I do
understand now. I see that unconsciously 
she was mourning the end of childhood, 
saying a long drawn-out, final goodbye.

Then she leapt into power and freedom,
new kinds of adventures, and began
the long journey of twists and surprises 
which led her here to me.

30 Poems in 30 Days: 30, the number 30


Submitted for Poetry Pantry #69 at Poets United

Always the Writing

Always the writing writhes
to be born and flower,
pushing up through a dark
ceiling of earth.

Always it pounds in my blood
wanting to break on you,
on the reef of your hard body,
explosive as tides crashing.

The writing is rhythms that swell
and will not be gainsaid.
It pushes, burrows, surges, leaps.
Hammers and shrieks.  Weeps.  Begs.

After the blind climax, the ebb
has the panting of  breath,
a giant wave receding.
I am its point of calm.

First published The Nonsense of Living anthology by The Aardvarkers
In Secret Leopard (Paris, Alyscamps Press, 2005) available from Amazon or through www.nissen-wade.com

This is an old one I've resurrected especially for the dVerse Meeting the Bar prompt: write about poetry. See also What I Build and Working (3)

29 September 2011

Building

I am building my life stone by stone.
It was always so. I didn’t know it.

Each decision puts in place
a foundation for the next.

Gradually, one by one,
they all fit together.

I am building my life stick by stick.
It’s natural. I only just noticed.

Every new direction creates
forks in branches, fresh twigs.

It becomes a structure,
lacey and intricate, with leaves.

I am building my life word by word.
Shining like diamonds, they are nails.

The nails of my words
hold everything together.

They can fasten stick to stone
or stick to stick. Even stone to stone.

I have built a house.
I have grown a tree.

I have made the house secure.
I have used the wood; it will last.

It’s a good, safe house. I like it.
But mostly I am out, climbing the tree.

30 Poems in 30 days: 28, building something


Submitted for Poets United's Poetry Pantry #76 and for dVerse Open Link Night Week 19

28 September 2011

The Urge to Merge

Though I’m far from virgin
it can still be urgent.

Is that verging on absurd
or splurging as obscene?

On the verge of age —
no, over the edge —

may I still rage,
or be left on a ledge?

With passion surging
I need no urging.

Only one way to purge
this urgent urge.

I can’t scourge it
away with detergent;

if I submerge it,
it emerges resurgent.

Is there some norm
from which I diverge

or is elderly lust
where we’ll all converge?


30 Poems in 30 Days: 24, an urge

27 September 2011

Dark Moon

moonlight
rainfall
street lights

grey-blue mist
backlit clouds
not one star

moondark
light rain
street fall

backlit mist
blue-grey clouds
no night star

nightfall
dark street
rain-lit

star-mist dark
light grey-blue
back street night

street rain
light fall
dark moon

Journalling my relationship with the moon: 30


And submitted for dVerse Open Link Night #11

Hana

I could pull a card for Hana, lady of joy,
except that I know her soul is Priestess.
She is poet and true-seer, guided by the Moon.

These last few years she has been exploring
Empress expression, blossoming in the Sun,
dancing in water, in tropical gardens, cradling

her infant daughter, watching her young son 
play and grow, willing him strong,
expanding herself, embracing herself.

But she is Priestess, who keeps her soul free.
The man with the face and form of a god,
eternally a youth, was temporary.

Venus was too much woman for Adonis!
And the soft, lush, fertile island
needed at last a contrast. She travelled

to the cold north, to a landscape
of tougher beauty, and found
her roots in rock and earth.

Deep roots. They bring her back now
to the temperate land of her birth, her girlhood.
Here she begins the ordering process,

the process of story. She has lived through
great adventures, emerging changed forever
and whole. She begins the chronicle.

                       ********

Seeker of joy, finder of joy, may you always 
dance in the light of the Universe! 
And may you, Moon-woman, continue 
inspiring and living true dreams.

Journalling my relationship with the moon: 29

In the Gilded Tarot, the Moon

In the Gilded Tarot, the Moon
has a soft face, sweet lady
gazing up at the light she reflects.

The crayfish, mysterious symbol,
is not crawling up on land
but jumping half out of the water.

The towering gates
are like massive candles
or Olympic torches.

Central is a gold disc
like an artist’s palette,
and like intersecting cogwheels.

The sun is about to rise.
Low down over the water,
the sky is pinky-purple.

The dog and the wolf 
bark in unison to greet
rising sun and risen moon.

This is a variant image
from the one in Rider-Waite.
Could I do magic with this?

I could, except that
no-one’s deceiving me,
they’re all asleep.

And I too need my sleep.
No need to find a secret name
for my hidden enemy —

the one who deprives me of rest
is myself, while the real moon
climbs the sky oblivious.

Note: This is not a reading of the Moon card in the Tarot, but 
a personal take on the images in this particular Moon card.

Journalling my relationship with the moon: 28

26 September 2011

Motivation

Nights of no moon,
days of no moon poems.
Somehow I am four short
of those I need to fulfill
the promise of one every day
for this lunar month.

It’s true: there were days,
a few days bunched together,
when I got jack of it — 
turning up faithfully
night after night
for your no-show.

Funny, when I do it
simply for spiritual connection
with no thought of poetry,
I don’t care if I can’t see you.
Knowing where you are
behind the clouds, I blow you
a smiling kiss anyway.

Journalling my relationship with the moon: 27

Hunting

In Kenya, the Masai still hunt the lions, 
predators which take their domestic beasts 

though it’s illegal now to hunt the Kenyan lions.
The men who hunt them are tracked and hunted. 

The warriors walk a fine line: brotherhood, tradition,
or the new conservation. Their world is changing.

‘We don’t kill lions any more’ (title of training film).
There will be compensation for any stock lost.

Can Masai still be men with no lion hunts? Lions 
are successful hunters, perfecting their killing techniques. 

The Masai have had their own conservation: unlucky 
for one warrior to kill more than nine lions.

A hunter called Sunepai has already killed twelve,
expects to die early, and goes on; knows no other way.

It’s about food, which is to say life
for lions and also the Masai. Can’t be solved easy.

(based on a National GeographicTV program)

30 Poems in 30 Days: 27,  food

Small Moon

Small moon, I don’t see you
although your accompanying star
is the one light visible tonight
in our clouded sky.

For most of this lunar month
which, theoretically, 
I was to spend looking at you,
I have been looking for you
and not finding.

Not your fault.
You presented yourself, I know,
but the weather ran interference.

You will be the same moon
(won’t you?)
next time you begin
your waxing phase.

But I wanted this one!
This phase of you. This present 
incarnation, manifestation, moment.

The moments skip past so fast
and we can’t grasp them.
I am not the first to discover this
but lately the realisation
seems more urgent.

Also we can’t
see past impenetrable veils.
I shall have to settle
as others have done
for the moments I am given

saying thank you.

Journalling my relationship with the moon: 26

25 September 2011

Looking Back

We like our little house,
we tell each other. It’s cosy.
And it is. And we do like it.

But one day, suddenly, 
unexpectedly, I say, 
‘Sometimes I miss 
the house we left behind’ —

remembering palm fronds
seen through bedroom windows,
and the rhythmic sound of waves.

‘I know what you mean,’
he mutters, to my surprise.

Despite the tiny bathroom,
the back yard we couldn’t use
for the noisy neighbours,
and the too-high rent

despite the python in the roof
which made us fear for our cats,
and a low street that could flood,

despite the awkward hike
from laundry to clothesline,
the brown snakes in summer ...

come to think of it,
I don’t miss it that much.

Note: For the benefit of non-Aussies, our brown snakes are deadly

30 Poems in 30 days: 22, leaving something behind

Rediscovering Stonehenge

(title of television program)

I am watching the History channel:
an excited anthropologist
thinks he has rediscovered Stonehenge
as a temple not to the sun but the moon.
Above the window which shows
the sun dawning at Summer Solstice,
another frames the light of the moon
coming to fullness every month.
And even the sun window also shows
Winter Solstice sunset — the true focus?

It seems self-evident to me:
the Goddess and the God,
the cycle of the seasons turning; 
neither sun nor moon alone, predominant,
but both, together, ruling the heavens
and shining down on the earth.
People, he remarks in wonder,
were able to carry out science
at quite sophisticated levels, observing
the movements of lights in the night sky.

Their physical skills, he adds,
cannot be parallelled. At certain stages
of the agricultural cycle, even today,
there’s a labour force with nothing to do.
The great pyramids at Giza
were built around the same period.
Newgrange in Ireland, believed to be
solar observatory and tomb, was earlier still. 
What magic built Stonehenge and the rest? 
He tells us: Infinite time and patience!

A German disc has been found,
dating from the Stonehenge era.
He displays it on screen, noting
it not only depicts the sun
but gives equal space to the moon.
At Newgrange he shows us a carved stone: 
three spirals coiling from one centre.
He wonders if this has religious significance.
Oh, just ask any witch! Yes, that
is a spiritual symbol, a clear triskelion.

After the end of the Ice Age, he tells us,
‘the moon-fearing hunter-gatherers’
were superseded. Agriculture needs
the cycles of the sun. But when crops failed,
did they blame themselves for neglecting
an earlier, lunar worship? (Yes, he suggests.)
He shows us tall gold wizard hats, decorated
with all the phases of the moon. The people,
he supposes, needed priest-kings, masters of time, 
who understood these older mysteries.

Finally, with irritating time and patience,
he arrives at my own conclusion:
sun and moon are united, sun and moon
are in harmony! Those ‘windows’ at Stonehenge,
when you get them lined up just right, reveal
everything that they reveal: the movements 
of the sun mimic those of the moon; and
the movements of the moon mimic
those of the sun. It becomes self-evident,
and he says it: They are one and the same.

Journalling my relationship with the moon: 25

Aso submitted for dVerse Poetics: Repetition.


P.S. The triskelion mentioned is duplicated in the Poets United logo in the sidebar at the right!

24 September 2011

Getting Acquainted With My New Cards

(pulling one card from each new deck
to describe my present path)

The Celtic Oracle offers me a ride
with the Lord of the Underworld,
King of the Wild Hunt
pictured horned 
and giving chase.
Change is promised
and chaos. I should think
before drinking from his cauldron.
New life — but am I ready?

The Wildwood Tarot gives me
Page of Stones, the Lynx,
and I warm. Lynx is a favourite totem, 
telling me now: ‘Pay attention
to the physical realm, the effects
you generate.’ A strain of wildness 
may need balance. There are new 
beginnings. My pathway 
is one of apprenticeship. 

The phantasmagorical Vampyre Tarot
presents me with The Fool:
the original creative seed.
Change and chaos again, and infinite
possibility. ‘A renewal in any or all
of our human domains.’ Great leaps of faith
like moonbeams from dark clouds.
He is the god Pan, drunk with passion.
And he is perfectly balanced. I shall win! 

(Even when no quotation marks are used, many phrases derive from 
the texts of these oracles. Not entirely a found poem, but....)

30 Poems in 30 Days: 20, three related objects

15% of Full

My energy correspondingly wanes
and so does his. I’m down with flu,
he’s lagging just a day or two behind
with the same exhaustion that hit me
twenty-four hours ago. He has taken
to his bed with The Australian Author.

He is an Australian Author — 
but perhaps not The. I am one too,
but similarly....  Why am I sitting here
making poems, when I could be snuggling?
I guess I’ll be doing that to my dying day.
Making poems that is, not snuggling.

‘Not snuggling.’ It’s a theme.
I want to be comforted, babied,
now that I’m past the crabby phase.
(Lucky for me he’s not there yet.)
The moon and I are becoming 
littler, younger, foetally curled.

Journalling my relationship with the moon: 24

Body Language

My ears ache,
my throat burns,
my nose is alternately
stuffed up and streaming.

My body tells me
loud and clear
I need a rest,
time out, time off.

‘Go to bed,’
says my husband.
‘Stay in bed!’
But once I’m there

he hovers
demanding anxiously
at the slightest twitch,
‘What’s that? What’s wrong?

‘What can I do?
What can I get you?’
Peace, I think,
and silence. Solitude.

30 Poems in 30 Days: 23, include three parts of the body

To Drive or Not to Drive?

The question is
should he drive again?
Two weeks left
to renew his licence —
for five more years, ye gods!

Suddenly he wants to.
He wants to try
our sweet new car.
Before that he was happy
with months of being chauffeured.

I stop one day near home
and let him drive the rest
of the quiet road.
He fumbles over how to start
and I remind him.

He snaps at me
and gets us safely home.
But it’s not enough.
Now he thinks he won’t
surrender the licence.

Sometimes the pain in his legs
excludes all other thought. 
He continually asks for help
with computer operations
he used to know well.

‘It’s only next Wednesday,’ I say
‘Till you see the Geriatric Specialist.
Let’s ask him if it’s wise.’
‘He’ll say no!’ he responds
at once. I rest my case.

30 Poems in 30 Days: 21, answering a question + 29, driving.

22 September 2011

The Moon Shrinks

as does my attention upon her.
She is not to be seen
through the haze that even the sun
has trouble piercing, the smoke
that even as it thins 
fails to disperse.

But I know that behind the veil
she’s a crescent,
a sickle, a scimitar, a curl of light;
outline of a pregnant belly, holding 
darkness within, the shape
of the unknown.

Oh void, oh mystery, oh edge
of nothing-something,
I am starting to forget you —
starting not to want
to enter the dark to look for you.
It’s Spring, Ostara: I dance in the sun!

Journalling my relationship with the moon: 23

21 September 2011

Resting Together

I love to watch them resting beside me:
my man and my little tortoiseshell cat.
She is very polite, waits until we embrace
and then settle into our sleeping positions
before she paces delicately up the bed
and lies down between us, purring.
Sometimes our hands collide
as we both reach out to stroke
her curving back, or scratch behind her ears
before we all fall into comfortable sleep.

Her brother, the black one, he’s the morning cat
coming boldly up the bed as soon as we wake.
She moves away and lets him take her place
for his turn at the petting and cooing. Then
they both start agitating for immediate breakfast
and one of us must rise to oblige, and the day begins.
Afternoons, they share the bed, now free of people,
sleeping curled together or echoing each other’s shapes.
Sometimes my lover joins them there for a nap.
I love to watch them peacefully resting together.


30 Poems in 30 days: 19, sleep + 26, an animal



Submitted for Poetry Pantry #69 at Poets United

Love in the Afternoon

The three-day-old smoke haze hides the moon.
My Astrological Moon Calendar and Planting Guide
shows it exactly halfway between full and dark —
so I imagine this to be a time of perfect balance.

Anyway it’s Spring. The afternoon is warm.
All the work is done. There are new sheets on the bed.
We kick the cats out of the bedroom and make love.
Long, lazy love lasting for hours; leisurely and light.

His skin is clean and smooth, sweet-smelling.
I nestle in, we stroke each other all over.
Afterwards he declares it our best loving ever.
‘You have a short memory,’ I say. ‘Some other times....’

There is something to be said for the slow descent
towards the dark, and the way the focus narrows in.
As the time of a life cycle shortens, moments lengthen.
‘In the last quarter, the movement is toward integration.’

Journalling my relationship with the moon: 22

Submitted for dVerse Open Link Night #10

20 September 2011

My Locale











At present it’s rather surreal.
The haze from yesterday,
only a little thinner,
continues to every horizon
and, we know, beyond.
The coppery sun, setting,
glows weakly through the veil.

We’re heading into fire season
with signs of a long dry.
We know that, further north,
the burning off is right
that caused this cloud.
A worse hangs over us
if we leave the grasses lush.

I live in a small town
near a large mountain
shaped like a brush turkey
or the profile of a warrior’s head.
We are surrounded by canefields, 
banana plantations, some dairy farms
and the hidden illegal crops.

The wide slow river
fills to its banks often
and sometimes floods.
In winter the cupboards 
fill up with mould.
Brown snakes every summer 
encroach on suburban paths.

There are places 
close to the mountain
where the energy is so strong
few can live there with ease.
(The mountain is full of crystals.)
At night we sit out on our verandas
watching the UFOs streak the sky.

No, we are not fond of strangers.
This area used to be
Australia’s best kept secret.
Now it’s over-populated.
Well yes, it may be true
that I haven’t told you everything.
The bottom line is: Stay away!

30 Poems in 30 Days: 18, Your city, town, locale.

19 September 2011

My Game

‘It exercises my brain,’ I say, 
or, ‘It de-stresses me.’  Truth is,
my Grandma taught me long ago
and it suited me, then and now. 

‘Little Rosemary,’
a family friend used to say,
‘With her feet on the ground, 
and her head in the clouds.’

I like to withdraw
for dreaming or musing
or just being 
with myself, by myself.

I read, I write, I think —
those solitary occupations.
I go for walks alone,
and I’m a solitary witch.

You must have guessed by now
my game is Solitaire,
otherwise known as Patience.
In different ways, I need both.

Once it was cards,
now it’s computer screen.
It requires a small part of my brain;
the rest goes wandering.

Real or virtual, the cards 
are red and white and black:
the Goddess’s colours —
which makes me smile to myself.

I savour the satisfying click
as I shift them with my mouse,
while in my mind I shift
the gears of the Universe.

30 Poems in 30 Days: 16, Playing a game

Making Connections

All day a haze of white
has covered the sky
turning the sun dark — 
but it’s too hot
for a nuclear winter.

The internet tells us: smoke 
from controlled burns and others
spreading across the corners
of two States. 

Tonight of course
we see no moon.

Out walking late this afternoon
we spoke to neighbours 
we’d never met, 
all at that point mystified.

Much later, watching on telly
an hour of Jimi at Woodstock,
I well remember
seeing this first at the time —
the height of the Vietnam war
and the height of the protests.

We knew about the napalm by then 
and My Lai. So did he.

Oh my God, we said in ’69, 
as he played the Star Spangled Banner
and gradually his guitar
gave us the noise of screaming 
over the blare of guns.

Confusion / connection / communication.
Even in times of no light.

Journalling my relationship with the moon: 21

30 Poems in 30 Days: 25, Include a pop culture reference. 
(Yes, the 30 Day poems are liable to get a little out of order now, 
as I seek to combine prompts when possible.)

18 September 2011

Hello Telstra

Hello Telstra, this is me.
I wish to make a declaration —
The termination of our contract shall be
not so much a breakage as an amputation.

It’s not unreasonable, I think,
to want more internet access than I’ve got.
It’s not even unfair to say you stink.
(Wait — are you a person or just a bot?)

Do you know your wireless connection [piece of shite]
only works in the mornings up until 8
and after 10pm or sometimes midnight?
Nothing in between. I wait and wait.

I fiddle, experiment, cry and curse.
And I know when I phone for a technical person
the situation will rapidly get worse,
though one might think it couldn’t possibly worsen.

I’ve been there before. They are full of advice
and it works for five minutes, then back to square one.
I’m sorry, it’s too much. No more being nice.
You’ve had it, it’s over, you’re under the gun.

You have broken my trust and disrupted my life.
I am discombobulated, devastated, mad.
I so need my sleep! You are in for real strife.
It’s Ombudsman time; I know I’ve been had.

                  ************

She unplugged her laptop and closed the lid,
then picked up the modem and hurled it hard
through the open doorway. I promise she did.
It smashed on the fence down the end of the yard.

30 Poems in 30 Days: 15, A broken object + (simultaneously) 17, 3 words of 4 or more syllables

Tonight the Moon

Tonight the moon
is a bright orange light,
as big as if full
but only three-quarters now
and hanging low down
under its nearest star.

I am glad to note that star
always attached to the moon.
I call to my love to come down
where he can see the surprising light
of this almost-orb we have now
blazing, not quite at the full.

Once he was full
of energy, sizzling like a star,
but frail and slow now.
Still he is thrilled by the moon
sending orange light
through the trees, and comes down

to where he can see it whole. I help him down
the steep stairs. Out in the yard, we are full
of childlike delight,
standing gazing at moon and star.
‘Yes,’ he says, ‘An astonishing moon.
I see it clearly now.

‘But I must go back up now.
I feel unsteady here. I think I might fall down
when I tilt my head back to look at the moon.’
Already my pleasure is full,
having shared with him tonight’s bright moon and star.
‘Let’s go!’ I say, keeping it light.

We climb back up the stairs by orange light
shining on us here, tonight, now.
I follow him like that attendant star
which follows the moon up and down
the arc of the sky; follows from new to full
and through the dwindling to the dark moon.

Leaving the moon, we enter interior light
knowing that life is full even though slower now —
having adventured down to an orange moon and a star.



Journalling my relationship with the moon: 20

17 September 2011

Visitations


My son visited from cold Melbourne
for the first part of his holiday.
We turned on drizzling rain.

Then he went up to the Gold Coast
to laze on Main Beach with a book.
He enjoyed some sparse, weak sun.

Now of course, he’s back home
and here we have warmth
every day, the mountains clear,

the sky wide and cloudless,
the river sparkling and the ocean
a shimmering vista of deepest blue.

Last Christmas my younger stepson,
also from Melbourne, came.
We said he brought the sun.

It was a hard year, that one. How gladly
we anticipated sweet summer.
He left. Then came the non-stop rain.

The sudden flooding drowned whole towns
and half a city, just a little north of here. Now
in this perfect Spring, we breathe in, and wait.

30 poems in 30 Days: 14, A change in the weather

Alteration

Low in the sky
the moon has lost
the top of her perfect circle.

Close by
is the only visible star.

Two streetlights
as if in reflection
sparkle, half hidden by trees.

Most of the houses are dark;
only two windows lit.

Despite their peaceful beauty,
I am a little uneasy
viewing these paired lights.

The still air seems expectant
with the certainty of change.

I write a haiku sequence
and realise I don’t even know
what is haiku any more.

I’ve moved into
a different space.

Quietly, without notice,
I am changed after all these nights
attending to the moon.

Reality and dream
evaporate. There is only poem.

Journalling my relationship with the moon:  19

Submitted for Poets United's Poetry Pantry #136

16 September 2011

Waning

Now she is getting on
with her descent,
her gradual dwindling.

We too, ageing,
enter a waning phase.

Fearing the loss
of the other,
do we not notice
it happens bit by bit?

We shrink in
to four walls
a small town,
fewer activities.

These last two nights
I haven’t even wanted
to look at the moon

just like I don’t want
to watch you (or me)

go gradually
into the dark, into nothing
but a faint edge of light.

Journalling my relationship with the moon: 18


Submitted for dVerse Open Link Night 9 

Invisible to the Naked Eye or, Coulda Fooled Me

‘If you don’t mind me asking, 
what is that?‘ — pointing 
to three rectangles 
of crudely woven straw
dark brown, looking dirty, 
attached to the exit wall
of the Medical Centre.

Our doctor, with 
a lift of his eyebrow:
‘That? That’s 
art, Andrew.’

30 Poems in 30 Days: 13, a poem with dialogue in it.

14 September 2011

The Last Time

We don’t always know
the last time is the last.

The last time I made love to X
(any of the exes)

the last time I saw Karen
before she died

the last time I set up my stall
at Pottsville Market

the last time I swam
in that creek with the pelicans

the last time I left
the island where I was born.

And sometimes 
we do know.

After the divorce my first husband
walking away down the street

the awful knock on the door
to fetch me to my mother’s dying

tears all the way in the plane
going home from my last trip to Bali

the last time I saw
my stepmother’s evil smile

the deliberate savouring
of the very last cigarette.

30 Poems in 30 Days: 12, Doing something for the last time

13 September 2011

A New Phase

She still looks full
radiating beams of light
like children’s pictures of the sun
but white, misty.

Last night I left all my crystals
out to catch that light.

Today I washed them  
in running water,
laid them to dry on towels
and began dusting their shelves.

Confronting the moon
and myself
brings me to action.

My demon is called Escape.
But it’s Spring
and I’m tired of burying my head
even in poetry.

All that power
I’ve been storing and hoarding
and hiding
having reached its fullness
now demands an out.

Journalling my relationship with the moon: 17


12 September 2011

Full Moon

I walk out into a vista of peace.
She floats on a sea of cloud,
surprising me with her hushed beauty.

A milk-blue heaven spreads
from under my balcony roof
wide, and across to the mountains.

In my back yard courtyard 
I find her again, high
in the centre of the sky.

Wisps of veiling drift over her face
as I blow her a kiss
and call the quarters.

Tonight I greet her alone.
He is in bed. He tires early now
and forgets our old, shared rituals.

When I said goodnight, I reminded him,
‘This is a night of power.
What shall I request for you?’

‘Health and strength?’ I prompted,
‘Love and happiness?’
‘All that,’ he said, and we laughed.

Then I grew serious. 
‘Really, what do you want?’
‘Deep sleep,’ he replied, fervent.

And so I ask on his behalf
and for myself
I request courage.

Journalling my relationship with the moon: 16

Anniversary Moon

The moon is above our tree
in a very dark sky.

On TV they are remembering
9/11, and the sun shining
in a very blue sky
that then turned night-dark.

It was morning here
when my friend Maureen
phoned and said, ‘Turn on the TV.
America’s been invaded!’

I yelled for Andrew to come
and banged on the door
of our guest Diane.

We huddled together on the sofa,
watching in silent shock
as the images played over and over
while lists of aeroplane passengers
ran along the bottom of the screen.

The day went weirdly slow
and I can’t remember
anything else we did.

Ten years later,
Andrew and I
watch on TV
the memorial ceremonies
and cry.

I get up and go outside
seeking the moon for comfort.
But the dark sky,
the black branches of the tree
and the small orb not quite full
fail to console.

Journalling my relationship with the moon: 15
30 Poems in 30 days: 11, memories of an historic event