Not the bridge too far

Nor the one over troubled waters

Not even the ones you burn

So there’s no turning back

But that rope suspension bridge

Dangling over the gully

like a sagging power line

That me and my faithful mutt, Salem,

Can’t bring ourselves to cross



My Little Cloth Heart



I’ve had it for a fortnight.

I use it on and off.

I clutch it to my real heart

when I splutter, or cough.


It helps absorb vibrations

shocks that might cause harm.

It keeps my body steady

and my spirit calm.


It is soft and cuddly

Pale red and bare.

Like Linus and his blanket

I take it everywhere.



Three Thugs and a Mugging


They came at me when I was at my most vulnerable.

I had just got up

And gone outside to pee

and was crunching on a few cheese crackers.

“Give us yer loot!” the big one intimated

With hard, implacable eyes,

Big bony dagger drawn.

So I did

Throwing the crackers at them.

They grabbed it in their beaks and flew off

Black cloaks drawn around them

Into the big blue sky.

A Move towards Empathy

big ballet



“You’re like Lee Chandler,” she said.


“Lee Chandler, the guy Casey Affleck plays in ‘Manchester by the Sea.’”


Jackson liked that film but he did not like Lee Chandler, the way he closed himself off from people.


“That saddens me.”

“That you’re like Lee Chandler or that I mentioned it?”


“The reason I brought it up is that I asked you if you’d like to see Anne perform and you said you’d give it a miss though I made it clear I’d like you to go.”

“I know. I’ve thought it over and would like to go see her perform.”

“Because you want to or because you’re afraid of being compared to Lee Chandler?”



It was a little late, Jackson admitted. It would have been better if he’d said so straight off but at least it was a move towards empathy. She would have to give him that.

Don’t Be Creepy

small eye


Don’t be creepy, I said, as she slunk down the passageway when she heard me

come inside and began circling the bowl.

I just fed you an hour ago.

But she looked up at me with her one cold, implacable eye.

Look at you, I said. You’re tubby.

I’m not fat, she said, Just fluffy. Will you please feed me?

I had no comeback for that.

You can’t argue with a cat.










Early Walk



On my early walk

I passed a group of musicians

Under the bridge


It sounded like

They were tuning their instruments

In preparation


For a concert

Perhaps a twilight one on the bank

The notes


Bouncing off

each other —Boing boing — like hollow

rubber balls


banjo frogs

amongst the rocks and reeds already

drawing a crowd

The Summer Flowers



I was out among the summer flowers

Reading Stephen King

The story where the boy’s mother dies

From a bee sting

When a bee alighted on the page,

Buzz off! I spoke. Buzz off!

As I brushed it with my hand when all of a sudden

My throat ……





I’m looking for my niche.

I know it’s around somewhere.

But where?

The next corner?

At my window of opportunity knocking

While I’m off elsewhere?

We may have even bumped into each other

And not known.

But I’ll keep looking.

I know it’s out there looking for me too.

After all, we are made for each other.

Perhaps if I wore a name tag.

But I’m getting warm. I’m feeling lucky.

Before I only lapped at the shores

Of achievement

But once I find my niche

I’ll really make waves!