I gather moments like raindrops,
these microscopic buds of spring
tricked by sun
to come out, one by one;
how hesitant can be
the grandest glimpse of things
I catch the way your moments dance
from distance –
yet close enough to ring
the shadows into song
in soft, legato days of praise.
how hopefully we hold
in tentative expectancy
You hold our hope in moments of joy,
What we do not expect
grips tight. I neglect
too soon what we know. Let go
that pass. Joy is forever,
the things that stir our hearts in song.
The Antarctic wakes us with its morning missive blowing.
Swaddled and bubbling, children shiver across the road.
Crossing guard, I open my smile,
bouncing frozen legs to warm them.
To cross the road like a child, I
must race and look not to the side.
What winter brings will soon be known;
the sun still shares the sky.
No other time of day can you sit still,
Here schedules mean nothing.
You may be late; that cannot be stopped.
Yet you can stop. You can look
at clumps of grass and broccoli gums
in wetlands and wonder how they looked
before this road was even thought.
You can watch
the faces as the windows pass
(no other time of day will you
see so many lives entwine).
Invent their stories.
Stop and know your own.
Hold last night’s mess in your hands
as you steer today’s wheel.
Consider the day.
Pluck your nose hair.
Watch birds fly back and forth in sequence
and fancy them a wind-blown sheet.
Name the clouds with metaphors
(a waterfall, a needle,
a walrus’s moustache).
Scan the forgotten gorges of your city and learn
how distances must be covered to move
to where you want to be.
Trace the sun as it chases the trees.
Learn all the textures of its light.
Watch the evening drape the sky.
Prise open this day’s grace.
Keilor-bound at the wheel,
a man plucks his middle brow over the hill.
Trucks speak in whistling brakes;
cars speak in blinkers;
billboards speak in covered-up breaths
and we, doubting ourselves, tremble forth.
Across gorges and bridges, organ-pipes hum
in the silent chorale of a wasted commute.
Gold glints through gum-trees;
grace glints in mirrors.
Wake up –
white, blue and dog collar carry this same weight
and glory hangs latent over the day.
Whan that Aprille with his shoures soote,
The droghte of March hath perced to the roote…
(Chaucer, The Canterbury Tales)
the clothes are dry,
the air is dry,
the leaves fall in their way.
April ends with such crispness
and we emerge,
knowledge of winter on the edges of skin
yet our bodies relieved from this dampness.
Follow, southern pilgrim.
The road leads to shivers, then flowers, then shivers.
Yet there will be a season
for laundry drying
and coffees on the lawn,
and a season when all the pilgrims of Canterbury
and Melbourne will dance
in the unendingness of sun.
We watched, static in our waiting spots,
lights red, traffic backed up Queensberry Street,
as the purple tent, pegless, half air-borne,
somersaulted across the road and stopped
at the stilled bumper of a nearby car.
The car was motionless, like ours, yet not
waiting to start. Content, the purple tent rested,
royal, carefree in this twilit crawl
in momentary grace.