All night and day it rains,
till at dusk I lift a window for the air
and my lost brother is outside,
slick with rain, disdaining
the bamboo pergola in his wild way –
leaper into deep pools, eater
of unnecessary chillis.
How handsome he is. How well
age wears his face.
He does not see me.

            Now all
the empty rooms of the holiday house
are full of my lost family.
How did I not see they were here?
I can hear the children
I’ve never met
bouncing on the candlewicked beds
beside their lost parents;
they shriek like whipbirds.
On a dry patch of deck, my lost mother
and the man recline with wine,
tanned, loose, happy.
She slides the flywire, mind on dinner,
and her eye
            slips right through me.



Pants! Notes towards a musical

Too hot in the night
I kicked off my pants, and
unknown to me
they fell down the side of the bed.
Three times I woke from sleep
frantic for pants, tore up the covers
like a mole in a lawn. No pants! I cried
on the moors for pants, love’s labour
lost. It was the east and pants
were the sun.

In the daylight I find
a false back in the cupboard does not open
on a hoard of smuggled kittens
I hide from the police, the sweet
hearts of all onions have not been
shy striated worms all along, and it beggars belief that
my indifferent mother would ever
            saw me free from a coconut,
even first having saved the milk to sell.

What is the loss of pants
            but a promise
that pants may be restored?
And with pants, everything. But
the day dawns motherless,
its cupboards bare.

poet's biography —>