Shaking All Over

The way you get worked up.

I can hear you, the noise of your coming, three rooms away.

Are such outbursts necessary?

Why, even the walls vibrate,
Now you’re really going.

Hope you don’t bust anything.

You’re not that young anymore, remember.

There’s no doubt you give it your all.

Do you enjoy it?

Sounds as if you do.

Now you’ve gone quiet, can I come in?

Yes ! The  clothes are done, giddy with all that spinning.

One hour, twenty. Wish I had your stamina.

You must be exhausted.

Travelling in Ambulances

I like to travel in ambulances.

They seem such warm, friendly places

especially the Aussie ones shown on our screens:

‘Paramedics’ and ‘In the Ambulance’.

The ambos are calm, confident and chatty,

the ride authoritative but reassuring;

you feel you’ve landed on your feet

even if you are on your back;

There’s never any drama with these ambulances:

You scoot along niftily, the traffic parting

like the Red Sea for Moses; you’re delivered

efficiently as a package from Australia Post.

* I've never travelled in an ambulance; have you?
* have you an ambulance story ?
*pic courtesy of Wikipedia

Who Let the Cat Out?

Who let the cat out?

Sleep did.

Sleep lifted the lid.

Let it roam

the alleys and backstreets

of the mind

rummaging through

memory’s bin;

Look what the cat

dragged in —-

half-buried scraps,

dead rats,

old what ifs.

Who let the cat out?

Sleep did.

Enlightenment

I was sitting at Maccas

chomping

on a cheeseburger

reading

what the Buddha had to say

on Generosity:

how it benefits both the giver and receiver

when this aboriginal woman

came up to me and said,

have you got two dollars. For chips?

Sure, I said,

digging deep,

pulling out a coin I plonked

in her hand.

Gee thanks, she said,

It’s my birthday today. I’m 29.

Lucky you. I said. Have a good one

and go easy on those chips.

She beamed me a smile

big as Uluru

& I knew what the Buddha meant.

One Special Place

I thought about what Fiona had said,

the female lead in ‘The Bear Came Over the Mountain’

about her developing interest in Iceland,

how she looked at travel guides,

read accounts of famous writers who had visited,

Auden, William Morris,

but didn’t really plan to travel there herself.

There ought to be one place,

she said,

one special place,

‘you thought about and knew about

and maybe longed for

but never did get to see’

*have you a place like this?

Biros

I started to think about biros again, how mine was long and thin like a matchstick but it had no heft.

A biro should have heft if it is to write anything of import.

Mine is fine for writing light verse, things of flippancy and quirk.

But for something darker, more adventurous, a biro with girth is required.

Yes, I decided, for Father’s Day I’m going to request a biro with a stubby stem, a bit like its inventor Lazlo Biro

photo of Lazlo Biro courtesy of Wikipedia 

Like Gustav

Which one is he, I say of the quartet by the river. Which one is Klimt?

Oh, he’s the one with the kaftan. He always wore one in public.

And I think, maybe that’s the answer, maybe if I wore a kaftan

everywhere I go people might take more notice, might say,

o, that’s the famous poet, he has a new book coming out.

And I could promenade along the jetty, frequent the famous kiosk

where all the trendy people go; and maybe go the full monty like Gustav

beneath his kaftan painting in his studio so he’d feel less constricted;

maybe that’d do the trick, maybe that’d free my poetry up

Bridges

Not Katherine Anne Paterson’s Bridge

to Terabithia,

the one that Leslie and Jess cross

to get to their magic kingdom.

Nor that bridge too far.

Not the one Over Troubled Waters.

Nor that terrible one on the River Kwai.

Not even the bridges you burn

so there’s no turning back

but that rope suspension bridge

dangling high over the gully

that me and my faithful mutt, Salem,

can’t bring ourselves to cross

photo by Andre Amaral on Unsplash.com

the Bunny Holding the Ball

when someone says, the ball’s in yr court

you know you have to do some heavy lifting.

It’s up to you.

If the shit hits the fan,

yr responsible.

The ball’s in yr court, remember?

I used to play tennis a lot, so the metaphor’s

sort of apt, but I remember tennis as a lot

of to and fro, you and someone else at the other end

but somehow it ended up just me:

the bunny holding the ball.

I can’t even remember asking for it.

How does that work?

Cliffs I Have Known

Unstable Cliffs, the sign reads. Stay Clear.

And I think of the unstable Cliffs I have known:

The deputy that has a meltdown whenever I call in sick:

my cousin’s boyfriend who punches holes in the wall

when he is denied,

and the glue-sniffing Cliff I taught in Year 11 who fell asleep

on the tracks coming home from a party and was run over by a train.

They should have come with warnings too.