When The Moon Turns

That was the day I had words
with the priest-
something and nothing really

he was expecting tea
and I didn't want
sympathy, or the knot of his tongue
as cloud prowled through Venetian blinds
turning everything grey

your life mirrored
in the one cup that sits
on the draining board,
small loaf, unfinished, blowing
mould in the bread-bin

the towel in the bathroom
that I fold and unfold, pressing it
against my chest, as though you
could be squeezed out of it
so we might have
one last conversation

when all living things are
singing, dancing, best dressed
for the occasion
the moon bearing smiles
the stars glittering hearts

and we will open the wardrobe
take out that box of memories-
humming waves will begin to roar
and we will laugh until our cheeks wet-

I walk from room to room
like a stray dog
catching its breath.

No Escape

Outside my door
a foot of snow,
rooftops hidden
grass hushed.

Winter's sounds are muffled,
the heart is stilled.

I grieve for the things
I cannot change,
friends I've lost,
the old cottage-

its windows frozen
with the breath
of ghosts
and ice cold dreams.

I shed a tear
because words fail,
after such a long time
I cannot escape myself.

Soul Mates

We spoke
of knowing each other
in some other lifetime,

our shadows harmonised
we danced in gentle blue,
along familiar paths
that wait in whisper

for such souls as ours,
blown free,
who understand
the language of stones,
secrets of the sea.

Small Breaths

No matter that my heart sinks,
sighs, with the weight of skeletons-

paths I forgot to follow
have slowly sealed

rooms go unrecognised
for fear of change

and I cry at the uncertainty of rainbows.

All the daydreams I stole,
refusing to give them back

are stored as silver dust
and each day is a small breath.

The Pianist

(after seeing the film)

you could have done,
everything was lost-

the air drained of laughter
colours frozen, clouded grey.

All that you loved
your fingers-
signature of the soul,
knotted, gnarled with loss.

You were running,
hiding, desperate,
buried in the dust of doorways,
no longer open or closed.

Beyond guilt or fear,
half-dead, in crumbling ruins,
the shallow breath of survival
pierced your lungs-

and in the desolate darkness
a silhouette, a ghost of a chance.
You lived to play again,
stirring the dreams of innocents.

The Letters

I wonder if
you keep the letters still,
spidery and blotted
now, like old days
just withered away.

I remember sunlight bursts
that inspired
those winged words,
the spirit of spaces
flying paper aeroplanes of love.

I picture us then-
a perfect summer's night
calligraphy of stars
burning Indian fire

and I wonder if
you keep the letters still.

Like A Dance

We dance on
gossamer clouds
as galaxies capture
misty morning dreams.

The night was
slow to leave
we were grateful
for its shadow-

imagining stars
on the ceiling
scent of sea grasses
moist on my hair.

Moon-made music
stroked the beat
of the clock
clicking time.

You held me
I held you
as an ocean
cradles secrets-

rolling blue
on blue
like a dance
on gossamer clouds.


It's like
standing at the top
of a cliff

from all directions
wind whips
hairline patterns
across my face

grey and blue
waves gather-

wash up silent stones
fractured shells

with the last box sealed
I stare

that sentimental lump
in my throat.

Night Vision

She breaks into your night
like a scarf of rain
slips the mountain-
shakes the wind from her hair
allowing the colours of heaven
to fall on your floor.

Her spirit
edged to the moon
dances rainbow kisses
around your faded heart-
whispered love
falls like starlit blossom
into a wishing well.

The Man Who Planted Trees

You waited with Fire
I arrived with Air-
the day was summer
but I had come wrapped

nervous, excited,
I watched you move uneasy
too, this was new, unknown
and we searched for a shared beginning.

The sun was hot
we sat outside-
you offered me your red shorts
not watching as I changed.

Trees swayed in the gentle breeze, symbiotic
and you asked me if I liked trees.
It made me laugh, that question
and you brought a book from your shelf

that told of the messages
trees bring-
we looked at pictures
I read aloud some words

you leaned over my shoulder-
as I turned the pages
I could smell the fragrance
of burning wood.

You told me about
the forest in Glen Affric
how you'd slept in an old bothy at night
and helped plant trees in the day.

I listened to your voice, hypnotic-
the wind laced pollen in my hair
as nature's healing spirits arrowed
magic spells that fanned the warm air.


We never really slept-
just buried clocks
in the sanctuary
of night

every time I moved
you moved with me
winged eyelashes
on your cheek returns a kiss

small spaces of silence
in between borrowed breaths
arms tighten
at the whisper of a name

all the words of the heart
the unanswered questions
are at this moment
blue rolling waves

tonight our souls rest
fragrant in spiritual essence
candle-flamed, undamaged
utterly belonging.

Stepping Backwards

Somewhere between sunshine
and rain
where the rustling tendrils
of Autumn leaves
tease the whispering wind
we meet.

We are silent
our shadows dark against the past
afraid of Leyden jar
expressions, excuses
we circumvent the charnel house of lost love.

Two hooded crows
guard the wishing well
the skulking moon appears

And I remember
your eyes and lips were planets
that left me breathless

Old longings
suffuse the crevices of night.

I pause-
my silver pockets tarnished
by shrapnel led dreams.

Summer Solstice, Findhorn Bay

Evening clutches at the tall pines
over Culbin and my eyes
take timeless pictures
across Midsummer's drip of rain

In the half-dark, like a dream
begun, I sense the ocean shrug
a pull of words as I crisscross
ancient grains of sand

Above the clouds, live all
the whispers of forgotten summers
on my lips the breath
of fallen stars

When midnight strokes its broken wing
I pick up my lonely shoes
run for cover, the echo of moonlight
in my naked heart.


Frankincense burned
as we shaped the night
with angel cards
words tumbled to perfection
R.E.M. played out dreams
we talked in hours
beyond the shadow of a door
a lifetime latched.

Sleight Of Hand

You snared me
with your laughter
and jewelled tongue
adorning words
telling tales
of druids and trees.

With you there were no nightmares,
only spirited streams,
bewitching woodland, your voice
which haunts me still.

I picture your hands-
the slight smallness
of them,
practised in the art of juggling
pots and pans
in a bothy of a kitchen.

I was your coadjutrix,
invigorated by the music,
the smells,
the ingredients.

You fed me titbits
from your lissom fingers-
pleasurable morsels
of skulduggery

we danced round coffee stains
till midnight struck.

Another time
another place
I will wear your shirt,
the black one with the mad flowers
and you will
unbutton each button-
I picture your hands.

Indian Summer

Like a deep blue wave
of passion
you shore into the room
where I sit waiting quietly,

We have moved through days,
loss, pain
to hold this moment,
this picture postcard seascape
of gentle harbouring.

You say
'I knew you were here
I could smell you'
and effortlessly I sway
to seal my fate.

You taste of ocean,
avenues of grassy dunes,
like a magician
you pluck a tiny pebble
from my hair-

Ancient survivor, sun-kissed
on this summer afternoon,
I step out of my dress
into your dream.


For years my mother
polished brass and wood in church,
her tiny hands performing miracles
on a daily basis

During school holidays
or sometimes on a Saturday
I shared her working day

At first I was afraid
of empty pews and pulpit,
silent saints on stained glass
or marbled, staring back at me

A room full of vestments
threaded red, gold and purple-
outfits for any occasion

My mum's voice like a prayer
would call out
to fetch more polish or a clean duster

It was as holy to me
as any hymn,
her smile circling every corner

Now when I go to church
and it isn't often,
I look at the shiny candleholders,
smell the beeswax mixed with frankincense

I hear the sound
of my mother singing
and light a candle
giving thanks.

Byron Bay (Australia)

Charred clouds smoke
the evening sky
air begins to cool
around our feet

the hippies dance
like fireflies
scissoring the streets
spinning smiles

and I float
on summer love
that ripples my heart
and roots me to you.