Monday, 30 April 2007

They will say,

"He was quiet,
A bit of a loner.
He kept himself to himself.
We never had any trouble with him.
A devoted son.
A good neighbour".

From behind picket fences
Bared like rows of white teeth,
And curtains secured with jerks and
Veiled with nets,
Their uncertainties will grow.
From their deckchairs splayed on lawns
Restrained by clipped spruce hedges,
And from magnolia stained rooms
With titanic televisions
That mumble through the night,
Someone will be bound to say:
"He was a bit of an odd fish".

And then teacups will clatter into saucers,
As they recount, around
Mouthfuls of custard creams
(In tabloid detail)
How I painted the door,

© GB 2007

Saturday, 21 April 2007

African Shower

The sky is the colour of bruised fruit,
Like pears, dropped,
Too too many times.
It bellows.
A beast from some childhood nightmare
That has escaped from under the bed,
Now everywhere and nowhere at once.
At once
The rain hungrily falls upon the window,
Clawing its way through the air,
Shredding the acacia and the slick black street,
Tearing up the world beyond the windowpane
To a frantic and irregular
I hear it scrabbling,
Scratching through the leaves with
The static hiss of untuned T.V.s –
That post-apocalypse sound.

Now I look out of other windows
At the lint-grey sky
And drizzle as fine as breath
That clings
To everything like disease.

My roots remember the rain,
And rejoice.

© GB 2007

Wednesday, 18 April 2007

Atlas Comes Clean

(Apologies to William Carlos Williams)

This is just to say
That I dropped the sky
And left the sun
Lying in the snow.
Forgive me,
It was so very
And no-one seemed to notice
Until everything started to

© GB 2007

thanks to Augustinclair for the line "The sun lying in the snow"

Monday, 16 April 2007

The Gingerbread House: A Survivor’s Tale

Here are the remains
Of my hungering roof,
Propped on nibbling biscuits.
Here is where the path fastens itself
To my door’s embrace.
And here, between pancake
Thrusts and darting sugar,
The curious forest peeps.

Everything was fine
Before they came -
Causing the cakes to howl
With cascades of crumbs,
And the lollipops to throw
Themselves from the sills
And shatter like bone.
Then the ice-cream cones
Sprang into the road
With heart-burning screams -
Never to be seen again.

Children, clothed in loss,
Their pockets shining
Like hollow moons
As their hands flew out;
Their fingers flowing over
Everything like a flood.
Their furious cheeks locked
Onto every part of me
And their eyes danced to
The flavour of my windowpanes.

And all the while,
Behind my weeping gingerbread walls,
The tasting cage nodded on its hook
And the cauldron stooped
To put another log on the fire.

© GB 2007

Friday, 13 April 2007


Drizzling winter night -
A memory of tears.
It smells nothing like rain.

with thanks to Pumpkin Doodle for the last line taken from the poem Hawthorne St.

Monday, 9 April 2007

Deep Freeze

Below the bowing shelves
That threaten to crack and drop
Their secret load like relief planes,
I stand as tall as a man,
My back pressed against the wall.

Hardly noticed,
I am one of many other appliances
Along the perimeter of your life.
A modern convenience.

I am the Antarctic, contained.
A place so seldom visited
That the sausages have evolved into seals
And I have birthed a platoon of penguins between
The ice cubes, paired and stacked.

Softly humming,
I await the time -
Soon now!
When I must release
My charges from my embrace.

And far behind the bags of steaming peas,
In areas as yet unexplored
By heated hands,
I hold a secret -
A woolly Mammoth stands encased,
Trunk upraised in expectation
Of the day I thaw.

© GB 2007

Sunday, 1 April 2007


Newborn Spring -
pink fisted azalea buds
salute the bumblebee.

© GB 2007