submissions

I sit through
the doublebungers katherinewheels romancandles
the flags names arrays of light
the patterns attached to buildings and bridges
the sputterings and mutterings
the again and again and agains set to classic hits

waiting for
the seconds of silence
the fizzing upward rush
the half-breath pause
the one
sky-filling
perfect
plain
chrysanthemum

From The emptied bridge
First published in Creatrix 33, June 2016, under the title “sky-filling”

In early Djilba

     in spring sunlight
     the silver lizard’s
     ancient skin

The skink is five million years old
Chasing a three-hundred-million-year-old bug
it runs under the raised base of a steel post
The iron is as old as Earth
The fence: two winters

The skink emerges, scampers, pauses
Filtering the rain of wavelengths
its scaly integument glistens,
passes heat into blood

It’s day one of Spring
in early Djilba
On the post’s hard body
at the edge of a weld
rust shoves aside grey paint

Djilba is one of the six seasons of Noongar country in south-west Western Australia
First published in Creatrix 48, January 2020

Gratitude at Auckland Airport, November 2018

For the little things …
The rough uneven pavers with spring weeds sprouting in the cracks
The painted path between International and Domestic
The travellers asleep in the sun beside it
The lawn they’re allowed to lie on
The modest terminal, its low ceiling
The little bird swooping beneath it
The tip of its beak picking crumbs from the carpet
The Travelex booth
The Indian guy at the counter
His smile, his Indian English
The magazines in the shop
The words in them
The labels on the food
The Indian guy at the counter
His smile, his Indian English
The privilege of my Australian passport
The prepaid SIM, no questions asked
The Maori woman at the counter
Her smile, her sentences, her SIM ejector
The Footrot Flats families waiting to board
Their sun-squint crows feet
Their sprawl, their fat, their cackling laughs
The absence of military police
The boarding pass in English
The walk to the plane through sweet bright air
The sight of distant trees

First published in Locus, Out of the Asylum (OOTA) Writers 2019