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 updated without notice. Nevertheless copyright applies to all writings here and all photos (which are either my own or used with permission). Thank you for your comments. I read and appreciate them all, and reply here to specific points that seem to need it — or as I have the leisure. Otherwise I reciprocate by reading and commenting on your blog posts as much as possible.

6 November 2013

The Critter in My Wall AND Surprise Visitor

The November Poem A Day Chapbook Challenge today gives us two prompts: 'Concealed' and 'Unconcealed'.

The Critter in My Wall

Behind the wall,
inside the wall,
I hear you scrabble and slide.

I hear you pause
then scrape your claws
on the plaster from inside.

At times you rest.
I like that best.
I can forget you're here.

But then you wake,
you thump and creak.
You're loud, and much too near.

You're not a rat.
Too slow for that,
and you don't squeak or gnaw.

A possum? Not.
They stir at night
and sleep by day. Therefore,

Intruder, Sir,
I think you are
a lizard of some kind.

Now that we've got
this far with it,
it reassures my mind.

Electric wires
will not start fires
because you will not chew 'em.

You will not die
and stink, so I 
don't care what else you're doing.

You come and go.
It's clear you know
the ways both out and in.

I have no say —
but you can stay
in your space, me in mine.

We're off the street,
we're safe from heat
or rain or hail or blizzard.

And after all
not every wall
contains a resident lizard.


Surprise Visitor

I was sitting in my garden,
resting with closed eyes,
when from across the courtyard
I heard a sudden noise.

From in the biggest plant pot,
which supposedly was empty,
there came a scrabbling sound,
sharp and indeed peremptory.

A prehistoric beast
raised its monstrous head,
turned and gazed at me
as if to strike me dead.

I wanted just one photo.
I ran to fetch my phone.
But he was quick and stealthy.
I returned to find him gone.

I never thought to see
a splendid water dragon —
one of the lizard sort —
in my suburban garden.

His brown and bony head,
his fixed and knowing gaze,
his knobbed and spiky body
continue to amaze.

I've never seen him since
(or her — it might be her)
but noises in my wall
perhaps ... I'm almost sure.

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