APAD 24 prompt: an evening poem
Sun behind us only
briefly dazzles in mirrors.
We have counted
four hawks hovering
and wonder whether
they're fixed on
mouse or lizard.
Now the sun retires -
through pastel light the birds -
magpies, black birds, galahs in pairs
swiftly, silently aim for shelter
in blackened bushes, trees.
We continue crossing
their paths, our eyes
fixed on town lights,
white lines, other vehicles
the future, the darkness
The more disguised you are
the more functional you become.
I pick you up, weigh the value
your fragility, capacity to bear
loads, temporary or long-term.
At thirty years old, you, clay pot
hold firm, still shining, still unchipped.
In you I placed the small statue
a cross-legged tobacco seller
whose brittle limbs broke off.
Protection: like a mind which draws
a curtain around experience, the pieces.
I make good use of mugs, bowls, pots
for plants, all made in China or by
craftspeople around this country.
Clay pots with obvious origin
in hands, from women gathering
at roadsides, sitting on one hip
on the ground in a group, holding out
their wares, are another species.
Made to earn money for education
they bear the future for all women
all families whose hunger rises
like steam on an outdoor wood fire
where there is nothing to eat.
When it rains here in my country
is that steam, evaporated, watering
my verdant garden, its herbs
growing from clay, mulched to
prevent being baked hard, glazed?