Prompt 17: a poem that reveals something
Thin branches - not
heavy enough for "boughs" -
sway, suggest alighting
an enlightenment when heat
is displaced and light turns
richly silked - gold, orange,
daffodil-yellow - settling in
the top sections of close-knit
trees, and birds seek
dimmer places, twitching
Prompt 18: "it's too late"
"Why?" I ask.
"Mind your own business."
There was a time
I could hold your hand
in waiting rooms, or
stroke your hair back
from fevered face, face up
to the doctor, believe
"It's private. Personal."
Why hasn't anyone designed
a redundancy package
Prompt 19: "suspicious minds"
in one day, three
"chack chack chack!!!"
urging me to detect
hissed at, it flees -
the grey fluffy one
the marmalade camouflaged one
the ginger slinker -
birds and me as one
undeceived by bland
Prompt 20: a "best ever" poem
lean-hipped and hungry
in loose shorts, I straddled
that early-teen summer
sanded my skin salty
scraped sandpaper hands
across sunburned limbs
they drank a lot - he, beer;
she, port - their daughter
(my mother), drank in
smoothed our moulting skin
with calomine lotion
lessons in stoicism
we slept on hessian stretchers
lay flat on stomachs
the tipsy arguments
as soothing as the suck and slap
of distant waves
Prompt 21: "Whenever ..."
Whenever the rains tumble down, now
it seems shocking that the sky can gush
so liberally. We accepted desiccation
as the norm. How are we to take
for granted every deluge, each storm?
The earth, couch grass, nameless weeds
as well as calistemon, caesia, grevillea
take advantage, draw while the well
is bottomless, and store, grow taller, while
I capture these wild waters, ignore them.
What can you do, after saving every drop
for years? The garden doesn't need our
benevolence. Hoarse laughter, flashing eyes
from the sky: more rain and more, as if
the clouds themselves are desperate to be dry.
Prompt 22: 1. fruit 2. vegetable (Two for Tuesday)
You turn up and the tables are laden.
You place your offerings wherever
you can make room. Sarah's jars
of olives picked in the park behind us
gleam. Vigorous strawberry seedlings
seem to beg to be adopted. I bring
calendula flowers, herbs, silver beet.
The only fruit is lemons juicy, sweet,
biting the lips in ecstasy. If you dare
take them home. And you always
seem to take more than you give.