We have not seen the moon since we arrived.
All these nights of dark, and stars, and song,
all these fears of returning to the world
that feels so lost but has been there all along.
If I could roll over and over in this water
between reflections of Orion, Gemini
Ursa Major, over and over between dark
and light until I lose all sense
of up and down, here and gone,
air and ground, melt into a liquid peace,
what would I feel but happy,
what would I find but release?
The sun sets softly, suddenly, this far from home.
I’m sitting in my underwear below the veil of a mosquito net.
When I close my eyes I still see the Lake,
the trees, and you. So easy to be lost in this longing.
For a moment, I’m sure I see the particles that make up the world,
and you, and me, and her, dancing in their perfect glory
while we dance around each other, imperfect, sometimes discordant,
sometimes in tune. A broken-hearted melody.
Earlier, in the water, I was sure my heart would break right out
of my chest. My breath, like an erratic bird, would carry it away.
My precious heart. My precious breath. This precious life.
Too much, too much, and yet never enough.
The light here reaches straight to the heart,
like a match to a candle sets you ablaze.
Watch the sun chase cloud shadows down
the rocks, across the water, and onto your skin.
No part of you is unilluminated.
When you wake from half sleep on Mandraki beach
to the sound of the sea, the music from the taverna,
the endless miracle of this light dancing on water
birds gliding in the hazy distant forever
You will have no more questions, nor answers either.
Where swallows fly low along narrow streets
and cats with pretty eyes watch you from beneath tables
where there are purple flowers and lemon trees,
and on Sunday the imposing black hatted priest
drinking coffee in the shade. This is a place you could come
by yourself and feel more found than lost,
where you can half sleep in the sun
listening to the sea speak its many languages
to the rocks, the light so joyful it stays
inside you when you close your eyes.
Two poems from ‘How Do the Parakeets Stay Green?’ published by Indigo Dreams Publishing Limited
HOW DO THE PARAKEETS STAY GREEN?
Bats swift past our balcony,
flit, dark, and then gone.
Dusk, and this vast city where
we’ve lost too many years.
By the man-made lake
a crow shines darkly,
beak open to swallow the sun.
I’d do the same, that burning
heat on my tongue,
if I weren’t tied to many things,
I’d open feathered wings,
ride high notes of wind, and
with every rising
I’d breathe in.
The city sprawls before us,
her concrete skin all too familiar,
we have travelled her veins
too many days to number .
Chameleons, we’re turning
grey to match her.
THE BRUISING STONES
Then I was a fish, sliding
my marbled body over
the bruising stones,
blue limbed, pale, and
misted as Scottish mornings.
Later we sat, a circle, fire
smoked our salmon skin,
an adventure away from walls,
rules, all things that
Hot chocolate comfort wrapped
in my numb fingers, thick and
semi-sweet as darkness.
Your faces lit fire-glow
You have scattered since
like feathered dandelion tops,
migrating birds, those flocks
of geese we used to watch
leaving each year.
I am living as a human now,
fully grown, carving
my life in stone buildings,
searching for the ways,
the words, to stay in touch
with us when we were fishes.