Easily Bruised

The organic fruit shop had the roller down this morning.
‘A power cut,’ the guy said, ‘Half an hour ago.
The whole block is down, no word of when it’s coming back on.
We can’t sell you anything. Even the traffic lights are out.

‘Yes, I said, ‘I noticed that turning the corner.
I was impressed actually, this car was just stopped there.
Then I figured they saw I wanted to go right, I felt so touched.’
Real live human beings in control, my wave seemed so inadequate.

So I crossed the traintracks and headed home.
The other larger set of traffic lights were out too.
And two police officers, female and male, standing in the wide centre
Directing lines of traffic, hi-vis jackets on, but looking so vulnerable.

Can’t they give them those giant gloves you see at sports matches?
Just naked hands, sweeping and halting, each their own style,
Dark clothing, dark boots, watching each other’s backs, inaubible voices.
I was at the front of the queue, ‘her’ lane, she was my hero.

Large cars moving past, insistent gestures to the right-turning lanes,
A scary ‘halt’ to someone who wasn’t quite ‘with them’, and me thinking;
‘What would this be like, a worldwide powercut, a worldwide crisis.
Everyone thrown back on watching and waiting, close attention.’

Everyone with a new job to do, eyeing her expertise and vulnerability,
The lack of the best equipment, pale hands in the face of juggernauts
Who edge out too enthusiastically into the centre, not watching close enough.
‘Hey you, it’s my lane’s turn, me and my entourage behind, I’ve been watching.’

Us, whose fruit bruises so easily, who trust nature and vulnerability.

Dear Flame

Dear flame,
How I let you down.
Why don’t I allow you
to fill my frame?

Dear flame,
Why are you so hesitant?
Will you burn me up
In my quest for fame?

Dear flame,
I feel you raging within me.
So many time I have
Doused your claims.

Dear flame,
Show me how to renew my spirit,
To take the lead, to lead others.
To remember my name.

Dear flame,
You are my ally within me.
Why am I so scared you will singe me?
Burn me down so I am not the same.

Dear flame,
How do I awaken from this slumber?
Brighten me up from within,
From under, from your source,
From the place whence I came.

Dear flame,
I am yours and you are mine.
Let this life not be asleep,
An underground course,
A forgetting, a life to blame.

Dear flame,
Steer my way, come from spark
To tender tinder; lift me up
Beyond rage, resentment, bitterness.
Help me where I am lame.

Dear flame,
Forge this path, the promise
Of my sight, the light that
Sears my visions, my dreams and
Remembering, beyond my shame.

I Found The Human Animal In The Zoo

I found the human animal in the zoo.
When I walked around the inside
Perimeter, the right-hand side of the
Raised path was done out like a garden.

‘What’s the animal in this one?’
I said to myself in jest. The Garden
Of Eden, where Eve animal and Adam,
Were wild in their ancient nakedness,

Surrounded by this fence? Among
Bromeliads and spiky succulents,
Amid rockeries and gullies,
This land to the right as I travelled

Around, was like the enclosure for
Humans instead. So that was the
Beginning of my trip round the zoo.
Little did I suspect it would end

With an echo. For coming back on
The way out, I saw on the other side,
Over the fence enclosing giraffe and
Zebras, the ostriches and, in the

Distance, the Nyala (an antelope) and
The rhinoceros – but before the rocky
Cliffs that reached down to the field,
(But nevertheless over the fence) –

A post in the ground, faded boots in
Foreground, a rusty gas cooker nearby,
A backpack hanging over the post – and,
A human animal hide: a faded shirt,

Once the pride, of a human
Humanimal in the wild Wild.

Seven Sad Ducks

I step outside and look to my left,
And suddenly I see seven of the ducks,
All ‘ducked down low’ and sitting
On the slope, their heads all the same way.

‘Which one of you is the mother?’ I wonder,
‘Or is she even one among you?’
I’m struck by the fact that I couldn’t tell,
All seven sitting quietly looking the same,
Their heads all pointing the same way.

All I know is I’m worried ’bout the babies,
There were 8, then 6, then 5, and now 4.
And I haven’t seen any this morning.
So yeah, which one is the mother in mourning?

What’s a mourning duck look like?
Is she cemented in grief by 6 of her kin?
Siting up there on the sloping lawn,
Chastened by the night that brought this dawn,
Their beaks all pointing the same way.

My Backyard

My backyard
Used to be mine
Before my landlady
Moved the chickenhut.
Now she comes on down
Like I imagine she fancies
She’s rolling down a tunnel
Long and smooth, past Tony’s
Twice a day to let the chickens run.

My backyard
Is a sloping square
Where I fill up on nature
Out by the firepit and duckbath.
But I gotta work on it ’cause my friend
She comes on down and I greet her warmly
And we talk together of ducklings and firewood
But really she wants to tell me the music’s too loud.

Cat Grazing

Getting up early
Placing the chair where
I can witness for once (out of bed)
“The Arrival of the Ducks”
(followed by the pair of doves).

Scattering the cat biscuits
Far and wide like
I am sowing seed in the dawning light
When arrives Frodo the Cat
Who softly, with surprise, grazes.



Happy Birthday Poem for Piet Radford, 83 Years Elder today!

Happy Birthday wishes to
Piet Radford, 83 an elder today!

Deep gratitude for the great pleasure
Of your company these past few years!

All the best for many more years living
(as you say) ‘your dream’!

With Aroha and respect


– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

I went to look

For a special YouTube video
From my library to send to you,
And found the perfect one.

This is called a ‘3-D fractal trip’,
Using very good computer software
That’s based on Mandelbrot mathematics
(fractal infinities).

The 3-D solid-looking ‘architectural’ structures
(which as an engineering man you’ll appreciate)
Are being constantly ‘fleshed’ in and out
By other 3-D similar forms ‘growing through and receding etc.’.
(and hence it’s 4-D really as we’re including time).

Anyway – have a cup of green bush tea on me
And check this out. 

For one wise man and never-grow-old inspiration
Who is young enough and still kicking (ass)
At his age to know what ‘trip’ we are talking about here.

And it’s the perfect present
As it’s what you’ve helped me realize.
Life is ‘Like In A Dream’.

Frodo Achieves His Mission

Well done, Frodo my cat.
‘Frightened Frodie’, scaredy-cat,
‘Frodo-dodo’, ‘Frodo-mojo’,
Mister Frodo, beloved cat.

This morning I saw in our interaction,
you have achieved your mission;
from frightened Frodo
to Frodo the Super-chilled cat.

You were one of a litter of five,
where your four siblings were
put down by the SPCA
for being too feral, too feeble.

For your mother was a stray,
(and your father who-knows-who),
and you have found your way
and survived your frightening journey.

From ‘Frodo more-backward-than-
forward shy cat’; to approachable
and approaching Frodo with Mojo,
beloved and loving cat.