Skeleton in the Phone Booth

A skeleton from the closet

Phoned the other day

One we thought had been

Securely locked away.





We tried to entice it

Cajole it back in

But that skeleton was

Determined to be seen.





For it had grown flesh

Learned how to live

And clearly would rattle

All the relatives.





This poem was written twenty years ago when first contact was made. It was more a ghost from the past than a skeleton but gradually over further calls it acquired structure and then one magic day it acquired corporeality. I was not there — my partner and I had split up — but I heard about it through others, including my children. Then just last week over New Year we met. This wonderful, warm person is now a part of my life. Thanks to the Marriage Equality Act She is getting married soon to her partner of eighteen years. She thanked me for keeping the lines of communication open and hope alive.

ps that third line in the second stanza still is not right

*have you ever had a skeleton from the closet visit you?

Dark Spots

There’s an ad on some Word Press posts saying,

‘Don’t Cover up Your Dark Spots’ and I thought,

Whoa, isn’t that what we’re supposed to do?

Keep our sins and prejudices in the attic,

not hang them out like dirty linen in public,

to hide our inner trolls, I know what the ad means.

I’m not stupid. Just got carried away by the metaphor.

And anyway I almost put up a post yesterday

Revealing a darker, nasty side of me but my therapist

Urged me not to put it up, that there are dark spots,

she said, that are best concealed.





  • Tribute to Blenholt by Natalia Zaratieger on Pinterest

A Hard Hat to Follow

You need a hard hat

a hard hat to go in

dismantling the enigma of existence

is a dangerous thing

the ceiling may collapse on you

the walls cave in

punishing your arrogance

the plumbing dislodge spewing

its putrescence over you.

You’ve messed with the masonry.

You need a hard hat

a hard hat to go in

to write poetry





*photo from Pinterest by Kristopher King

Days of Indolence and Roses

I’m really looking forward to today.

Today’s the day I don’t exercise.

Oh, I may lift a finger to pen a poem

or two,

stretch a limb to reach for the remote

or break into a walk to put out the bins

but that’s it.

Today the body gets its chance

to plonk itself down in the armchair of life

and not feel guilty.

Have a glass or two. Eat some chocolates.

Read ‘The New Yorker’.

A day of indolence and roses.

That Little Kid at Maccas

That little kid in Maccas

from Aldinga Primary

with one hand on his yellow scooter

is picking up his order as I

am putting mine through.

Hello, he says brightly

& I say, hello, back

& I think should I be even speaking

with this kid?

[hasn’t he heard of stranger danger?]

so I ask him when did school go back

& he says, Monday so I ask him what grade he is in

[ he isn’t that little]

so I guess, Year seven

& he says, Year 5

& adds he comes each morning to Maccas

to fill up his tummy

so he can work hard .

He collects his pancake with chocolate syrup and strawberry milkshake

& scoots off

with his bag of calories and good work ethic.

*pic courtesy of Wiki Commons

They Say I Shouldn’t Read

toadstool

They say I shouldn’t read anymore.

That I read between the lines.

What isn’t there.

They say I shouldn’t read anymore.

That I read the writing on the wall.

That I scare residents.

I scare visitors.

They say I shouldn’t read anymore

because I read the fine print

the little white-gilled toadstools hidden

in the mushroom fields of the text.

They say

they say

they will revoke my privileges.

Barfing in the Bushes

claire-satera-0lk4hww7pdo-unsplash.jpg

There’s a cartoon of a couple in a car

tearing down a roller coaster

and the woman says to the man, “With you screaming all the time,

I can’t hear myself scream.”

Men are so much noisier than women, my partner says.

When I began barfing in the bushes at a country fair

She implored

, “Can’t you barf quietly? Everybody is watching.”

Barfing has no volume control,

I wanted to say

but I was too busy being sick.

 

  • photo by Claire Satera on Unsplash

 

Perhaps I Shouldn’t Have Said It

220px-Laurence_Olivier_-_1939

Perhaps I shouldn’t have said it

But I was just a kid

Stuck inside a senior’s body

And so I did.

 

I thought it showed a little wit

But it was way off grid

A sort of Heathcliff on the moors

A fugitive from my Id.

 

I should have kept a lid on it

Would have been better if I did

But not everything condescends

To sit sedately in the Id.

 

  • do you think there are things we shouldn’t speak about?
  • what do we do with these primal feelings that keep threatening to ‘come out of the closet’?