dainty fingers

the mammals
between sleeping and waking
exchange old dresses.

perhaps it all went wrong.
what if my memory
stopped ticking
and i'm alone?

i don't think from sleep
the dirty clock will be closer.
small nations and dainty fingers
battle the end of the world.

i need to learn wisely
to always be brave.
eyes glazed
thoroughly covered in april.

the sky in delhi haiku: monsoon

the sky in delhi
hangs heavy with thunder
crickets are silenced

today it's venice

why is it that
wherever i am
however content
i have an itch
for something


the sky was full of wishing stars today
and not only the sky
but all of the air

in between houses
underneath cars
past trees
traffic lights
people's hair
were floating
these stars

but they looked
from the ones at home

they were bigger
and they sparkled
and they looked
like plastic
but they weren't
and the seeds
in the middle
looked like plastic
but they weren't

one swished right past me
so close i could've caught it
but i didn't

because i didn't
feel like wishing
for anything

old woman

it will be nice when i am old
and filled with the words of ten thousand books
and all the sounds of other languages
and wisdom deeper than love and stronger than vodka.

it will be nice to see my face
with the lines of joy and the lines of despair
and all the stories hidden in my eyes
and all the secrets waiting and quiet in my mouth.

my body will be full of scars
and my heart will be full of scars
and i will love them all because they are me
and they have taught me better than textbooks and teachers.

i will smile and close my wrinkled eyes
and i will regret nothing
because i am and will have been so lucky.


i am in
- or greece
as this is
lonsdale street -
the last night
of the earth
a flat white
and the
most overpriced
with cinnamon
and almonds
i am going to eat
it all
even if
it makes me
because hell
i paid six dollars.

i am in
alone but one
in this cafe
with these
plastic marble tables
these creaky chairs
this fridge going
buzzzzzzzzz zz z
i'm imagining
i'm not here
i could be
for the hours
to slide through
the cracked

in contrast,

melbourne is more grid-formation
than a birdseye potato waffle.

seven a.m.

the sun rises in delhi
like a dirty glowing fag end:
slowly burning a tiny hole
through thick white sky


broken triangles
stretch up and shatter the sky.
i am so so small.

last drive home

elastic shadows
the low sun paints the earth
with watery gold


orange evening walking home
through crumpled rusting chaos
i stumbled and swallowed my heart.
cruelest of magics, but i'll get stronger.
i'll get stronger and i'll soar along blue channels
swirling above these useless dreams and broken houses.


these damp mornings these days
tick tock tick away
with instant coffee,
emails, plans and post-its.

the week is a disappearing act.

but today is friday. so
i’ll spend it with pablo neruda,
hot cappuccino
and dreams of the indian sun.

in the night

in the night
(when time is not
time and thoughts
are not thoughts
and life is like
being drunk and
alone in the dark)
you have to laugh
at yourself
by yourself sometimes.
that's how you get
to the morning.

full-moon-black-cat wednesday (lesson for the teacher)

grab it hold it and let it go.
let it fly (with big white wings) -
and know i have wings of my own.

gentle sunday

sweet calm restful night
steam from the kettle
and lowering light

gentle sunday
simple bliss
may it always be like this


when we were
younger we
would jump
in mud and
feed horses
polo mints.

it's only
when you
make it

midnight haiku

static indigo
animalclouds and skylands
silently moonglow

sunrise haiku

bloodorange circle
ten thousand sky volcanoes
time-lapse explosion

nobody quite gets it but me

this one time quietly long ago
some of us were walking
(and two hedgehogs were walking)
in a crumbly towncity evening.

it was off the map. somewhere
between sunday and wednesday.

a kind of secret nobody-knows-about time.
folded away, almost forgotten.
smallsmallsmall yet also
bigger than the world.

only a few days.
only a few nights
but to me it was enough.

sometimes (in mauve dozing mornings,
with that lazy air that smells like other countries)
i think about you.

our place in the scale of things

incredible white and
a tangled gold river almost
by light and
who can say
what is cloud mountain sky snow

below a thick cotton ocean
laps round the glaciers
alps rising up
harsh jagged pure

everything so so so so
wide and high and deep

and i float above
in a tiny tin box


it has been cloudy all week
but with no rain.
simple faultless allegory

too many days of watching seagulls on the roof
a few smiles
a few blue windows in the sky

a poem is like a

a poem is like a photograph made out of words
stitched together with bits of old string.
and each word is so truly and wholly connected
to its sisters and brothers
that together
they burrow deep into the darkest
most quietly secret corners of the soul,
further than a camera sees, further
than an eye or an ear or a voice,
and wake the heart from a
long ago forgotten dream

i am crying

i am falling asleep
and am full so completely so full –
of love of joy of peace –
and i am crying

i am crying for the enormous sky
the birth of summer and for freedom.

i am crying for the huge huge life
that’s new and young and waiting.

i am crying for all this love
for all the people, for all my years.

i am crying for happiness and loneliness
and for everything i’ve lost and am losing and will lose.

i am crying for my poor overwhelmed heart
and tiny wings growing out from shoulders.

i am crying for the world
and all its beauty and all its horror.

i am crying for everyone
for no one
for me.

poem for freedom

you are timid.
some days you hide it well,
like a coat of paint
on a scratch in the wall,
but it isn’t gone.

you can kill this nervous fear.
say goodbye to the sensible voice
sitting smug in your head,
saying “but…what if…i can’t…”
and be free.

today you are brave.
there is so much world out there –
tiny corners and giant skies
waiting for you to find them.

put on your comfiest pair of shoes.
you don’t need money,
you don’t need makeup.
wrap up your heart and keep it warm.
today you are brave.

one becomes two becomes three becomes four

one becomes two becomes three becomes four
hours slip through cracks in the floor
and time falls by and time falls by and
days drift out the open door

patch of blue

this isn’t a poem about love.
this isn’t about how i am or was or could be in love with you.
it isn’t a childlike idealism of wanting to be with you forever
or a self-indulgent, whining elegy.
and it isn’t worthless sentimentalities like the day we met,
that time we kissed, or
reading neruda together.
this poem isn’t about that.
it’s about the morning when we climbed the hill
and you,
for a moment,
stood on the edge,
with the brightest sunlight i’d seen all week
shining down on you from a little patch of blue
while the rest of the world was grey.


maybe today you made a mistake,
broke a mirror, slept too late or
left home without an umbrella.
maybe today you worked long hours
and left your house keys on the bus or
stepped on the cracks or
raised your voice.
maybe no one gave you flowers.

maybe today you didn’t say what you
needed to say, or spoke too soon or
felt regret or guilt
or loss or pain.
maybe today you lost a friend
or cried or screamed
or sensed despair. or maybe you tried
and failed and lost again or
maybe found your first grey hair.

but that was today.

and now this day is fading like
a book’s final page or the
last note of a song. indigo rises
and the singing birds fly home.
and maybe now, full of lightness,
you sleep. wait
for something new.

maybe today you made a mistake,
broke a mirror, slept too late or
walked beneath a ladder.
but maybe then you gave the world
a second chance.
maybe today you believed
in tomorrow.

i think maybe i am too young to write poems

i think maybe i am too young to write poems.
i haven’t had time to get sick and tired and angry,
haven’t been loved really or loved really,
haven’t learned enough about this world.

i do not understand and i am not wise.
i haven’t seen life truly: povertywardeathsadness...
a child looks at the world in wonder,
but i with my twenty two years have scrabbled
in the dust and stones on the surface –
cut my knees once or twice –

i have known a bit and learned a little,
but i’m still teetering over real life.

suspended in my bubble untainted above all the horror,
i think maybe i am too young to write poems.
i need time to mature grow ripen:
like a lemon:
go sour