old poems


two trees
branches reaching not touching
a spider’s web between
two voices
span a table’s smooth emptiness
with a strand of quiet words.


Crickets play morse concerts through a quiet afternoon.
Shadows stretching and searching for evening.
Parrots echolocate each other, and the fruit trees.
The dogs are curled but listening for his voice, the smell of his hands, perhaps a treat.

I am digging.
Folding under dry sticks of parsley and planting more beans, blue and lovely.
But I wait for you too. Listening.


Stepping into the shade, dark, spiced cool.
A high silvery factory roof over long, tall, rows of language in small jars.
Cool, white windows of smallgoods;
ask for your choice of sausages, cheese, octopus, anchovies, salmon, tapas.
Explore the brown boxes of pasta, kilo bags of colourful spices and racks of fresh bread.
An older man from somewhere, waiting at the till with six jars of pickled cucumbers and a massive bag of walnuts. Imagining his kitchen with tidy chairs and strong coffee perhaps.
I find my own flavours, sampling from these other worlds, and step back into the Australian sun.


Red sails, black hearts
Hexagonal chandelier
Strands of ovate silver pairs:
Improbable flower.

sewing at mums

Hairy McClary claims the sunlight near the door.
A quiet guitar steps slowly like a waterbird; another foot, another bill, humming.
Pins and steam map our journey. The sewing machine follows, mostly, across folds of creamy calico. Set sail for home with hooks and curtains.

whipper snipping

spinning, cutting, spraying cut grass
editing the waiting mass
long, lush, woven jungle,
passive resistance, lying flat
crickets and spiders step out
looking for sanctuary
beyond this tidy carnage.



frozen adventure
speechless silent beginning
skipping the first day


mud map

Baked earth memories, centuries old.
Ceramic soldiers, amphoras, tablets; whole cultures defined in fired clay.
Interwoven tile and brick frames a home.
A ceramic form wound with copper wire loads with heat and current.
A fine glazed hemisphere, steaming above circling noodles or tea.
So many impressions in smooth ceramic, a vast mosaic reef of story.
an aggregated carapace edges across our landscape.


Don’t breathe, close your eyes
The thick harmony of traffic moving in unison.
Each gorgeous monster waiting in line
in a destructive torpor, breathing grey heat
and inching towards sunny tragedy.



Legends branch and resonate in rusty reds and golds
The city no longer exists, just these seas of almost square glass pieces.
Hand-set stone pixels whispering old stories;
an exile, a poet, a dance, a war.
Rich unexpected life in sandy silence.


Sunburned face under a wide-brimmed hat.
Faded denim and cotton, black rimmed glasses.
Old hands with corners, like a portrait by Vincent.The copier hums

The copier hums, huge, complex, obtuse.
But he runs it through its paces, smoothly, reduced, double-sided.
Strolling away with smooth stacks of hot paper and a smile.


green afternoon
finding household rhythms
washing moves from whirsplash to spin
sleepy dogs watch me turning the earth
pegs and sunshine catching damp flags
magpies check the digging


lunch and reconnection
family banter over sweet coffee
cool darkness inside, outside
vivid green lawns, birds in the sheoak

autumnal colour here means
the sun is gentler and all of the colours wax with saturation
a happy dog wags and grins, hoping for treasure.


is the name for a community of organisms
we do not recognise;
the other place, the non sense.
Some people walk the web of species
their meshed health and significance.
For the rest of us, apophenia.
The state of imagining meaning
where we have lost their language
and the pattern of their purpose.


the piano is old
missing a few teeth
stencilled in pinwheels
sprayed tattoos in blue and silver
over walnut stained timber and old gold.
piquant chords, gently blended
augmented, diminished, lovely sound,
sweetly unexpected.


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