After working 8 hours, plus a 2 hour drive to town then 3 & 1/2 hours of playreading, I was feeling somewhat frazzled yet curiously sleepless. My flight north was early morning. This is what escaped in those solitary hours.
shadows slide : behind me : into walls & dumpsters : as i drive the desert : that is : the city : cbd at night : killing empty hours : before my pre : dawn flight
an angry : drunk : couple stagger : a younger couple : trundle home in tandem : on one of those insidious scooters : left lying : like litter : all round : the barren streets : he in what appears : at a glance : to be a tux : she’s kilt-wrapped : in a large tartan : cape? : a single woman : walks : the traffic island : like a tight wire : rather than brave : the footpaths
past old homes : the few that still : remain : ones that haven’t : been converted : into doctor’s waiting rooms : or knocked down : so a big super : market chain : has an entrance : to its under : ground : car : park
nip : down to the sea : smell the beach : salt : the dog & i : once walked : every day : happy
this quick trip : rips through : high : lights : of past lives : before i fly off : to an : im : possible future
Not quite sure how I did it (or indeed if I did it or some cheeky digital pixel pixie) but somehow yesterday’s post went to live in 2015 NaPoWriMo. This short note is just to preserve a sort of continuity. Here’s the link to it. Day 14 – poem about weight
A friend showed me a draft of her poem entitled ‘insomnia’. So the word was in my head. Mine is a very different beast (as indeed no doubt are the things which keep us from our slumber). I didn’t intend writing it, but when the images of the ‘same sweet ghosts’ arrived & hung around, as it were, my path was trod.
well past the witching hour —
cold air — crackles the dogsnores
— magnifies the pastacrunching
mouse in a kitchen cupboard —
(who last night i tried to catch
obviously without success) —
chills the toes on my right foot
— it’s always colder than the left
even under the doona — no idea why
— must resist sleep at all costs —
& all the while — the same
sweet ghosts that usually haunt
these long alonely hours of
pretending i don’t wish to dream
float above our heads — trying
to interest me in a game of — remember this ? —
Today (as it was, Friday) was a challenging day. I had quite a few attempts at things, none seemed inspired or inspiring. I was more interested in reading rather than writing for most of the day. I had ideas, but they just weren’t flowing. Finally, I had to call an end to it & begin to get ready to catch up with friends & go see a (as it turned, rather strange, bland) production of Dracula.
In the shower, however, the first lines of this poem (“i hear voices in the water, singing in the shower stream”) made themselves known to me. Others came pretty rapidly as the wonderful pounding heat soothed my stress away. The fact that these lines were later bumped into verse 2 & tweaked a bit is of no consequence. The fact that I was almost late to the play because of the need to finish the poem, perhaps is …
at my old house. 3 sets of footsteps would run away. when you approached the front door. stop. as you unlocked. then race to the back room. temperature’s
changed. for no reason. the back bedroom
was always colder. no matter the weather.
here, i hear voices. in the water.
people talking. in the shower stream.
singing. where the drain turns a corner
down deep there. below the bath
& it always feels. someone is near
not too near. perhaps. but close by.
not always, a good thing
for those. who live. alone.