The Apiarist



Summer had gathered hot stones

and its ancient ache for inferno.

It sparked the chimney hive

into over-drive and in, out

the swarm frenzied at the noon

disc that ticked everything up.

He said he’d wait until evening

business gets good

when the little ones stop surviving.

And slowly the sentries quieten

no order to gather anymore

returning baskets of gold

to the Queen’s gilded bed.

Up the ladder he went, ascending

to a crown of wings, his leathered

legs veined in his smoke churning

blooms of termination.

Spatulating his way into sweetness

the catacombs of syrupy tenure

fell from the walls of brick

and he claimed this empire

smelt like charcoal, a carcinogenic

condiment you might taste once.

As night crowded in slow

darkness licked at the tang

of kerosene and honey

drawing a diaspora into its throat

viscose on bodies of the damned.

Share This

Primer coat questions


Primer coat questions


My mind is between mice

either breaking their kiwi

fruit skulls, their fuzzy husks

the clicking of supple spines.

That day I was a genocidal killer

and usually I am not white

but today I am because concrete

leaves lime on me and so

does paint. It’s a DIY invasion.

Plugged in, podcast poets

refer to their self or ‘selves’ as if

no-one else can get them

and if I’m being honest I’d say

I am confused too.  Aren’t I just me?

My dog can apparently look with love

the same love I have for him.

I need that now when I think

of my son and how I’m losing him.

Sure, we’ve connected over

mandolin tremors – he can hear a C

when I can only hear fading echoes

together we’ve rued how flies now bite.

Then I remember the song of stroking –

Up, Down Daniel Son, Uuup-dowwwn.

There are big questions for me

in the molars of storm clouds

things like is there enough time

to finish the thing I have started?

Is being part Pinoy making me good

at humidity? Maybe I will finally

meet my mother on her terms

as the world warms her barrio.

Does dark skin make me immune

to cancer?  I paint on, straight

and conservative over taped edges

watching white bore into my fingers

turning those tan eddies into pale whorls

and I worry again about my son and his rat

tail and flat feet and double joints

and anaphylaxis and vague falsetto.

Am I just some cruel tight-faced

master slapping on strips of white?

The world as I remember will suck

the mother tongue from your mouth

put it with all things that have gone.

How many coats are needed before you

can’t see the grain? What will stop

the weather splitting timber to its core?



Share This

Back to Authors