Art, Books

Moons of Mountain Ana…

*

Mountain Ana made the phone scream.

Squeal of a thousand and one pigs!

Fingers of pain…

Scratch my brain.

 She is upset that Gramps has traded her ring.

‘Soz, Mountain Ana.’ …

*

When Gramps turned up wearing

Nancy’s gold ring,

Jenny thought it was a hoot.

Her hoot-face is for the moment still.

It possesses a distant smile.

Intuition – ‘just like Becky’s hoot-face.’

*

Becky’s sulk-face is adamant with indignation.

If she only knew how perilous it is to neglect the young.

*

…Our roles are reversed for the tale

of mum and dad and a kitchen knife,

which Fiona tells in sobs on the stairway.

 *

Something I said has recalled her

feather streaked cheeks of pain.

 *

She laughs

and we go on up

to talk about

a tennis ball

turned inside out…

 *

Becky speaks quietly

but her quiet voice banishes

distance like a shout,

“Josh, come back inside.”

 *

Is this redemption, or merely the wisdom

of being old enough to know better?

*

With almost perfect symmetry little Josh

wants to take some flowers back to Mum.

*

 He plucks from the two Laburnum

grown together over a garden gate:

harmonious estate,

or the strain of embrace,

stretching… to cleave?

The scent from the cups is intoxicating,

and yellow, Becky’s colour…

 *

O’ my tyger tree,

 your blossom

 will spread that smile

over lips which profess to disdain flowers.

 *

…On the way back Josh has an idea: he wants to visit his Dad.

*

Regardless of content, our most intense moments have a habit of assuming ritual clarity.

Together, the figures our characters cut are colourful, and bright, and amusing;

the wheel-spinning white car which your mother read about in my story,

or Roma’s amber earrings,

Louise and Paula, uncharacteristically, dressed in black.

*

Gemma,

who plays football,

and for whom love… is too painful?

*

Did I really say that?

She wants to travel, or that?

‘Me too! ’/ ‘that’s how I drink’/ ‘I do.

*

If only it,

and you,

and I

were true!

*

Even Sandra

mimicking my mudra,

and Mimi’s mint.

*

In sleep

I strike a

Centaur dead…

*

The blow

reverberates

in my head…

*

For a time

I cannot face

the open sale of lace.

*

Becky is beautiful

but kind and cruel,

in turns.

 *

Her eyes flash when I call her a vamp,

and when I bad mouth her boyfriend.

 “You make me laugh,” she says, “can I kill you?”

 *

She has the hair of a teenage friend,

the eyes of an old love, the profile and

features of a desirable aunt, the body of

the goddess Parvati, and a smile like paradise.

*

Her mischief resembles that of a childhood adversary.

 “I’m going to turn you into an ass,” she smiles.

*

 Her hoot-face is reserved for her most cunning lies,

 “I thought I’d see you there,” yet she still

succeeds in soothing the situation.

*

 ‘Does she really sleep with him?’

*

“I’m sorry about your Grandad,”

she says, like Mum at such times.

*

Warmth floods the room…

*

Gemma’s warmth as

she links my arm and

the world stops screaming…

*

You are an island dark with life;

A swan-hatched dream, taking flight;

A blue-shot cormorant, nestled in night.

*

Gemma’s warmth when she talks about

the sort of house she wants, her bottom

drawer, and the colour of Christmas decorations.

 *

The warmth of a smile

 when I look at her crotch:

 earth / urge / air / care.

  *

O’ for another storm stressed day,

when the sky spoke and

our world yielded… to rain.

 *

‘I could have run much faster.’

‘You should have been here over Christmas.’

*

Of all the things

I’ll never get chance to do…

 

 *

“So when do I get that drink you owe me?”

“Soon…”

*

The warmth of silence as she threads the eye of a needle.

*

“I like your owl.”

“It’s Minoan.”

*

It would have been a privilege

to spend

the rest of my days

here, forever.

*

Never.

*

It never was

so good,

again?

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