Like an Animal

Like an Animal.

I hear it like the sea

from four or five streets away

faint, soft

like a cuddly toy

but when I sit outside

in the car port

where the barbecue is

it smashes into me

like an olfactory wave

a phantosmia of

chops, Frenched lamb cutlets

sizzling on the grill

and me, grabbing them by the hands

ripping into them

tearing the meat off like an animal —

& I know then

my appetite is back.

Axle: a children’s poem

There’s a miniature submarine lurking

at the bottom of the aquarium .

It is smooth and black with feathery gills .

It is an axolotyly .

We call him Axle , of course .

Most of the time he just hangs around

amongst the water weeds .

Perhaps he’s lonely and depressed .

But every now and then

he rouses himself

and cruises around as if on patrol .

The other fish give him right of way .

Perhaps he thinks he really is a submarine

on an important mission ,

keeping the waters safe for democracy ,

for instance .

Sometimes when he cruises past the sides

of the tank

I give him the thumbs up .

It seems to give him a lift .

  • pic courtesy of wikipedia

Start with the Animals

Start with the animals, Buddha once said.

So I do.

The cat wants to go out. It is badgering me to let it out in the balmy evening where all sorts of adventure await.

But I want it to stay inside, settle down like me.

It is so easy to be mean.

I open the door.

I must open my heart a little more as well.

My girl and I sometimes send unpleasant texts to each other. It is what couples who are not quite couples do.

I think the meanness in my texts should be let out too.

I open the door. It dithers.

I give it a swift kick up the backside and send it on its way.

I begin my text message anew.

The Animals in Me

I have been called an ostrich for burying my head in the sand,

a mole for burrowing down to my zone of creativity,

quiet, unreachable,

a creepy lizard by a former girlfriend,

a snail for withdrawing inside my shell when I watch TV,

but best of all a bear, Johnny Bear, a much loved character

from my partner’s childhood, who lived with Grump, his mother

in Yellowstone Park in the book by Ernest Thompson Seton

which I am now devouring like the bookworm I am.

*which animals have you sometimes been compared to?

Early Morning 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

Snail *

He is a hobo;

his worldly goods humped

upon his back





He is an athlete;

in the race to be slowest

he excels





He is Hansel

leaving a silvery trail to mark

where he has been





He is a bear

hibernating in the cave

of his shell





He is a tank,

tough, tenacious, passing over

all obstacles





in the kingdom of the small

he looms large.

He is a king!





*after reading Beth’s post ‘Slowing Down’

Which Animal Are You ?

Perhaps I am a porcupine.

I am prickly by nature

& when I forget to shave

I have a prickly kiss,

Like most porcupines

I live alone

except when I cohabit

with other porcupines

in which case, I’ve been told,

we live in a prickle.

When my quills are quivering

people steer clear of the thornbush

that is me.

*what animal are you like?

*want to add a little poem about yourself as that animal?

Wolf Down

A few years ago I read a book called Wolf Hall.

Now I’m writing about Wolf Down

what the cat does with food when it’s been stuck

on the roof all day;

what we do now

wolfing down pleasure,

sunshine,

the great outdoors,

going for drives,

doing stuff together,

hoping to outfox the old virus for another day.