Tuesday, 20 November 2012



At last the coal is in the grain of my fingers
and under my nails and the smoke works
into the roots of my hair
and the deep crispness of the young day new
and so slightly raw tingling like scratched skin
makes the morning’s darkness no so
and the leaves have been so burning as they fell so
sun and fire and age old red against the dew cleaned green
not yet made mulch by tramping feet
I could weep at it the joy the joy
the joy and the moon burns
with the leaves colours humming and singing
softly in the air it rises up
with stars and planets and everything is
everything is everything

and at last my hand holds an axe and my heels
a swiftness waiting lifting in my limbs and my hand
holds a leaf holds a water droplet
in the crease of its spine supple yet
supple yet the mist which holds
the springing deer the bleakness blue and green and brown
the washed land the pressed earth holds

warmth in my palmprint in my palm 
the lines of my finger
the lines of my father
the fire of the falling leaves

November 2012

Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Dawn flocks

Dawn flocks

I heard a flight of ducks
or geese yammering they intruded
on my dream, sounded like
human voices a human voice
that cried help

I suspect in fact it is
a fox, that sounds like a child
crying close in the borage

Before I was woken by
the huge laugh of a crow so
near I could feel the
dampness of his
black morning feathers, hear
the thwump of his vanishing
wings that brushed my forehead
cold toes

going to the window I can see
in the first sun and the clean light
and still of morning still not
the yelping flock

in truth there are some gulls
they squabble over something over
the shimmering bristling
of grass beneath the yet
unmuddied sky still
fresh from the burning
cool of stars

I look for the fox
There is none

They die down
The many greens reveal themselves  

Monday, 16 July 2012



See the sparrow with his
little heart, little heart and little
that babbles
and ripples with notes
like smooth stone ringing
walls sheer and singing

today there is a seeming mist
from behind the trees leaves
breathing a sigh upward

from the mouth the white sky
heavy with leaves lungs

lying suckered to twigs
like something fallen from the nest

breath picked and carried by passing wind
the boreholed core that leaves
dreams skinless
in the day’s racing light

the sparrow sits
his single note on the tree tops
little lungs, little green lungs

singing to the unpainted vanishing
whiteness this morning overhead.

Sunday, 27 May 2012

Three poems / Chicks / The Robin

Three poems

You watch a woman walking
on a street with small
tight steps that give nothing
and get nowhere
she is trying
to get somewhere but
she won’t
not like that

Where does it go?
Where does that
go, that she is walking
on, walking on with her

There are new flowers
that have pushed through
the soil with
small shoots, as if from
nowhere they have got up
and out

Things go in the ground
they go down in the mud and mush
old time makes new time. 

Things are green
Soon there will be frogs

You laugh out loud
The world is young yet.  


I watched the mother fly from the nest
stuttering under her young’s weight
she got no further than
the length of a lying man
before she had to dump the
headless mess of half grown feathers.

The first’s head was clipped off
by a dinosaur’s snapping beak black
and white jabbering up to the sky
forced down its gnashing gullet.

Soon another came out
I didn’t see it carried, but I found it
not far from the first now buried
with a small clay coloured slug
oozing on its eye
the pin pricked pink of its bare belly
cold and firm in the mud. 
A pet cat came and sniffed

The third seems unharmed
and will become stronger now
for this intrusion.

The Robin

The robin watches me while I dig
he watches me with his shiny black eye
side on not blinking
waiting keen and quiet

for me to turn up worms
and the small things that live
in the soil and scutter  
and twitch in his sharp beak

I being a large mammal
who shifts and
shunts the earth around

once, I slice open
a perfect hole, one part
of a tunnel now collapsed on
the heap of what I have dug
the earth is dry and grainy and slips down itself  

Dad comes to look at the trench
and to level it
he kneels and with one hand
paws through the loose earth like
he is swirling hot water
around a bath

I watch him move the earth
I will not lay the wall until he says it is time.