The shallow draught
of a flat bottomed
open skiff drifts alone,
moving with its shadow
cross hatched
onto the vitreous water;
vying with the spirits that pour
across the bay.
As moonlight dresses them
they are reanimated –
proclaiming –
they would provoke our eyes
and enliven our dreams.
From square behind to pointed bow
the small vessel becomes full
with the company of twilight and
of water flecked salty winds
that cause the well turned
knotted oars to creak –
bangled cuffs take the strain
of their lifeless posturing
as they languish half hidden
in the hyaline polish of the water –
a jailer to its hostages:
strong subaqueous
roots anchored securely,
the shaded petiole
that bend too easily with the shining
movement –
plant’s shafts straddle the muted
cries of a multitude of birds
percolating through and the insects
dancing with the yellow
veils of lamplight
fastened to posted arms.
Bawling from the tirade
of flocking travellers,
setting sights on home
permeates the eerie echoes
they create – agitated wings
cause a draught to wrestle
with the duckweed
also festooning the flower
ornamented pathways
of this spectre’s lawn.
The small vessel steers unaided
towards the Cattails and reeds
growing along the shoreline’s
covered stones; back to back,
beautiful in their lacustrine
tranquillity – moss
like chartreuse
pouring over
each of them -nature’s embankment
an overcrowded edge soaks it up
and the cloying,
sprawling mist
the small boat passes
and comes serenely to a stop
at the figure
arising from the lake.
Faint sounds from startled peachicks
escaping, amid shifts of hazel,
make way.
Vaporous air wraps her feet;
tiny water droplets suspended
make the ceiling to her underwater home –
greater reasons beckoned her awake
from the sands and sediments
of her grief –
awake from the night’s silence
and to set sail.
Moonlight and all else vacates
the small space – she takes
their place
and steers gently through
the ghosted night.



Anacampserote – something that can bring back a lost love
I found this inspiring title to *Miss Book Thief’s words featured at the end of mine. Please go and see her work.

I thought I saw you in the market
today where long gowns float busily,
and their vibrant colours
occasionally sweep the dust
and extraneous verdure
abandoned to the floor,

and where comely sheen calls
from the plump richness of aubergines,
bolsters for cantaloupes and apricots –
a cornucopia
just on the fringe
of nature’s arrogant charm
vying for space with the cheeky grins

spread on the faces of vendors
that never tire and whose speared fingers
endear us to their wares
in waves of gestures like a peacock’s
cooling fan competing for display.

Sellers try to capture my stare,
but my stare is irretrievable, sold to you
without question and still lingering
between shadows –
mortar for the cracks between people to people,
as bodies meld in the busy,
excited clamour of every day.

I think I see
you again, and my heart races
with my sweat exuding this morning’s
slap dash of perfume and fumble
for keys
sat forgotten at the bottom of my basket
with my shopping list –
I’ve just added something.

Tantalising smells thrust under my nose
bring me back,
back to the market’s hustle and bustle
of legato chants to entice us
in the final throes
of its wooden framed denouement;
the afternoon has gone already,
lost to searching among
the throng of life, lively produce,
with ripened senses.

I return this temporary insanity, hope,
longing, madness – deal with
the devil –
whatever it is – to my basket
to replace items that have dropped
from the crumpled paper –
unimportant now.

I was back
to the cheeky grin and indecipherable
chatter of the vendor – a light arm
around my shoulder.
At the end of its reach
was another vision; beautiful,
tempting fruit, perhaps
as a salve

just as the sun hangs up its sign
and glad hearts are picked off the floor
like the escaping legumes and berries
too wild to stay put

you appear again
belonging to a shadow that has sped
across your eyes – you can’t be real,
but citrus smells rise,

pale streaks of
tourists’ legs scramble
to make way, brushing with those
inside the multicolours;
their beautiful swirls dash towards
the darkened shadows of alcoves and spent
recesses that line the market place.

You plough through it all: sun kissed
boldness, dusky arms and with a smile
befitting the backdrop of the high mountains,
sweeping deserts
and rugged coastlines – everything I remember,

except you are laden with hessian
sacks brooding with figs and the other beautiful
everything I wished I was – what I used
to be and in the place I longed to be again.

I thought it was you here in this market;
vibrant, fleshed, articulate, ripe with scents
and goodness, unlike in my dreams –
dead, angry, rotted and intangibly

My heart stopped as you neared, my knees
went crazy, and when you passed straight
through me, I remember what you said
a long, long time ago,

‘In the place
where our dreams
and realities collide,
in the spaces
between each minute,
in the magic
that resides
within your words-
that’s where
you’ll find me,
that’s where
I’ll be waiting.’*