Sunday, September 29, 2013


I walk the boundary line
The line between here and there
Between your place and mine
I walk the edges of the line
The precipice of this time

I walk between our breaths
Seeking some way through
Yet Cerberus keeps pace
Guardian of the line
He will not let me through

A refugee in time
I wait behind the line
But in my mind I see
The light beyond
The boundary line

Exile of many roles
Expatriate of faith
I’m used to borders and boundaries
Yet still I walk with faith
The limits of the line

I walk
For I have seen the light
I’ve felt the subtle air
I walk and wait

Behind this line


The battlements are still
Defences resting
From defending
Fortifications stand idle
Surprised at the silence

Time and energy
So much fear
Spent in building
Safeguards for protection
Yet the Trojan horse
Was already within the walls

A Trojan horse
Birthed not built
The gift of myself
And not from another
My bequest, my
Perverse blessing

The battle is always
Lost from inside
Barricades built
Carefully to deflect
Now disintegrate
Splinter and decay

Propaganda, propagated
Self-believed, disingenuous fabrication
Falters and falls in silence
Defences, now monuments
To a historical version
Of what had been

Yet the blessing’s gift
Is straightforward
No monuments required
No defences necessary
It was what it was
Simply that

Friday, September 27, 2013

The Room

There is a room
It is a room I built
Stone by stone
It took me years
To learn the trade

There is a room
Empty, not soulless
Unfurnished yet welcoming
In the restful

There is a room
Murals of hopes
Painted in vibrant
Vivid intensity
Hidden by grey stone

There is a room
Scattered rugs of thoughts
Fashions of yesteryear
Air thick with the fug
Of uninterrupted dreams

There is a room
Occupied by my souls
The different forms of me
They don’t take up much space
Just shadows in this empty place

There is a room
There is no doorway
For you
Can you enter my shadow?
Can you live in my emptiness?

Thursday, September 26, 2013


To understand
To grasp, to know
Is to interpret and perceive

Yet what is perceived
May be mis-interpreted
And mis-understood

Can you know love?
Can dissecting it with thoughts
Help you understand

Perceiving love’s beginning
Do you understand its ending?
Or the journey in between

How can we interpret love
Its blossoming birth
its fading fatality

Something’s cannot be grasped
Much less understood
Something’s are for the living
It is in the living, rather than
Grasping and perceiving

We understand with gentle knowing.

Fragments of Beauty

Perhaps beauty
Is easier to create
When cut from solid rock
Muscles hewed
Curves carved
The creation is proportioned
To perfection

People are less malleable
Less solid than rock
Skewed by blood and bone
Proportions are more elaborate
Lines less inclined to perfection
Curves sagging conspire
To confound beauty

Yet beauty hides
In living fragments
Shy, suggestive and subtle
The sinewy strength of
An arm at rest
Hairs glinting
Cinnamon brown

The beauty of eyes
Unveiled by sudden openness
The recognition of our humanity
Reflected back to us
The gentle curve of lips
Slow sensuous wave breaking in
A smile that lights

While I admire perfection
I prefer fragmented beauty
Beauty less proportioned
The exquisite allusive cracks
Through which with subtle grace
Beauty infiltrates and saturates

With tender touch

Wednesday, September 25, 2013


This melancholic haunting
Soft and tender
The gentle erasure of tracks
From sand dunes of desire
Grains, wind blown
Time sifted

Dust scattered remnants
In an empty space
Memories, fanned by your breath
Zephyr of moist warm air
Across soul’s wistfulness

Your hand
A memory I could not hold
Time wearied, fades
Lost to more insistent hands
Forgive my infidelity
Memories grow weary too

This nostalgic note
Echoing resonance with
Pungent memories
The kiss that never was
The kiss I wanted

Yet never gave

Tuesday, September 24, 2013


Do you remember?
The monotonous click
Of sprinklers
On a still summer night
The whoosh of water
Spraying with a click

Do you remember?
The solitary whine
Of a mosquito
In the hot darkness of night
The sound of the smack
And smear of blood

Do you remember?
The slow trickle of sweat
Beaded rivulet
Rolling down
Sheets turned damp
In the sultry night

Do you remember?
The taste of desire
The sweet sour tang
Of longings ache
To lightly touch
The golden glint of sunlit hair

I remember?
Slipping hard into
Unsettled sleep
Sheets turned damp
The sultry heat of


Monday, September 23, 2013

Night Dance

Silence still and deep
Rests its weight against me
While restless blackness
Fidgeting wakes me

Strands of sleep
Slip from me
Filaments of fogginess
Released in dreams awakening

Marionette shadows, slowly
Pirouette in lonely solitude
On the dance floor of my walls
Piped by winds lament

Silhouette of my soul
Constrained too much by day
Restless in the night
Dances in dreams embrace

Darkness kisses me
Winds requiem of leaves
Soothes me
Transiting stars fade


The dance is done


Inspiration meanders
Seeking illumination
Between distractions

Illumination wanders
Between attractions
Seeking revelation

The inspiration of revelation
Often illuminates
The strength of our attractions

We would prefer
To be distracted
By our attractions

Than risk
Of the in between

That space
The fractured void where

Illumination meets inspiration

Thursday, September 19, 2013

A Kiss

It was flung backwards
A kiss that wasn’t quite kissed
As he, string puppet like
Unfolded and shook himself
Out of the car

That awkward phase
Between father and son, when
Love is stretched and all akimbo
Dancing side step
To avoid the bruising

Son needing to know
He is loved
Yet push it all away
In case the burden
Is to much

Fathers fearful
Son will not be enough
Try to toughen
Up their love
Stand in stern akimbo

That kiss, it floats on air
A requiem to the past
A time when love
Was much more certain
It hovers on hope and fear

For sons always hope
They are enough
And love though stretch
Is not too thin
That kisses miss their mark

And fathers fear
Their sons love
Is not so tough
They cannot say

I love you.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

I have not had enough

I have not had enough
Of howling winds
Their whistling wailing
The marrow of my bones
I have not had enough
But the turning, it is here

I have not had enough
Of cold’s embrace
Its frozen fingers
Against my flesh
Of icicles blood red
Freezing veins blue cold
I have not had enough
But the turning, it is here

I have not had enough
Of kisses from the frost
Lips chilled as ice
And ruddy cheeks
Dried and cracked
Love bites from the cold
I have not had enough
But the turning, it is here

I have not had enough
Of winter’s rage
And pounding waves
I have not felt its naked fury
The freezing silent haunting
Stalking my arousing
I have not had enough
But the turning, it is here

I have not had enough
Do not leave me
Embalm me with your freezing
For numb and cold
I can feel
Let me stay glacial
I do not want the turning
The greening of the leaves

The seasons turned
The sun is warming
And leaves are greening
Life is arising
Let me stay
In the safety of frozen sod
I have not had enough

Not enough.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

A Letter

They say time heals.  That’s crap.  Time doesn’t heal; time doesn’t give a toss one way or the other whether you heal.  You learn to live with the pain.  The pain is like a disability, always there.  Sometimes it doesn’t affect your life too much and you can trick yourself into believing you are doing well, that it is resolved but it is always there.  Waiting!  Grief is patient if nothing else.  It can outlast you, it can outlast your thoughts, your “dealing with it”.  It just sits, waits and then knocks you sideways.

So Matt, I am back in this vortex of pain.  People ask me why?  Why do I feel like this?  I look at them, like they are from another planet.  Why?  Why??? What sort of stupid fucking question is that?  Why am I in pain?  Because I watched my son die, because I thought I was going to have you back; because I sat by your bed for 3 days listening to you trying to drag air into your lungs.  Each breath more painful and raspy than the last, the silence between those breaths growing longer and longer. Because I couldn’t speak to you as each time you heard my voice you rallied and tried to come back to this place when we both knew you had to travel to time beyond this time.  Why am I in pain?  What a fucking stupid question. 

Then people tell me I am in pain because I feel guilty!  This of all comments makes me angry.  No, anger is too mild a word.  I feel rage.  I would like to let my fingers rip their eyes out and listen to their howls of pain.  Guilt?  I am a father, I would die in an instance so you and all my children can live and yet I had to go the doctors and tell them to switch to palliative care, your brain traumatised by the fall, infection and too much surgery.  Do I feel guilt for that?  No, if truth be told I am grateful you were spared the indignity of brain damage.  Does my gratefulness make my rage any less?  Of course not.  The thing I find so offensive about Christianity is that God let his son die!  No father, willing allows their children to die.  Don’t talk to me of a loving heavenly father who allowed his son to die.  That is no love that is an abomination.

Matt, I am filled with rage.  I would howl my rage to the universe.  I love you and yet I am also filled with rage towards you my young pup.  You, who thought you, were so invincible the laws of gravity would hold you.  You were invincible yet you weren't!  I remember the nights we ran together, then walked and talked.  I remember the feel of your hand in mine that last Christmas.  I remember driving down Beaufort St one night to collect you at 2am because you were lonely.  Your friends had gone of drinking and you didn’t want to join them.  You felt so alone.  Now you have gone and I remember.  I love you and yet I rage for what you did, a simple mistake with disastrous consequences.  Can love and rage co-exist?

It seems they can and there is no resolution.  Perhaps rage is simply another form of grief, another facet of this thing I now live with.  Perhaps, Matt I do people a dis-service, I sometimes wonder if people think we have accepted something if we can see a higher purpose, if we can integrate the experience into some meaning.  I suppose that is why often religion flourishes because people want meaning.  Yet, in your case I don’t think there is some higher meaning or purpose.  It was just an accident that had life changing consequences.  Perhaps there is no meaning, it just was and I have to live with that.  Does it make me any less angry at times?  No

So Matt, I am angry, no I am filled with rage.  Somehow in admitting this it is okay.  I can be filled with rage at what happened and that doesn’t change my love for you or me missing you.

Tomorrow is another day, another day when I can choose to acknowledge my rage and find beauty in life.  Another day, when I can choose to accept this gift of life and acknowledge my pain and the fact I miss you.

Much love

Your father.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Waiting Room

Welcome to the waiting room
Make yourself at home
You will be here awhile
Sink into the chair
Upholstered with sweaty fear
Let it kiss you on the lips
Feel it clammy, moist

Welcome to the waiting room
TV for your distraction
Ads for life’s essentials
Sparkling dishes
Super bright shirts
Incomprehensible in your
Stunned state

Welcome to the waiting room
Hell’s ante room
No padded cell
To cradle your anxiety
Just walls, antiseptic smooth
From which your angst will bounce
Reverberating in yowling pain
Welcome to the waiting room
Where you watch hope escalate
Drop and disappear
Seeking to excavate some faith
Some remnant of a prayer to send
Up celestial hierarchy of angels, archangels
The Holy Ghost, Jesus and God

Welcome to the waiting room
Where doubt roots in vinyl tiles
Fertilised by frozen breath
This is the place, you learn to hate
Where you learn to build your smile
Muscle by contorted muscles
To hide your dread

Welcome to the waiting room
When he has passed
And time moved on
A fragment of yourself

In this waiting room

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Reflections in the Mirror Looking Back - No 9

Fob Watch

Light behind me
Reflected in glass
Shapes from the past
Given substance
Brought into the present

Memory forgotten
Amongst so few
Your watch
Watch nestled in your pocket
Secured by golden chain

Here, on a shelf
A fob watch
Moments ticking in a box
Time eludes backwards
Bringing you forward

The memory of your hand
Cradling time
Decades passed
Your grandson now grown
A man in a different place

I crave again, time’s piece
Between you and me
That golden chain linking
Grandfather with a fob watch
With grandson of modernity

Relationship snapped
By transportation to this land
Re-forged in memory links
Of golden chain
And fob watch held in his hand

The Swell

Sullen in its greyness
Swirling in brooding churlishness
It smacks against me
Probing for a weakness
To unhinge me

A turgid bully, it plays
With malicious teasing
Throwing its weight
To unbalance
And confuse me

Dull, heavy laden
Loutish, it eddies
And pushes against me
This bullying grief
That flows around me

Give me grief’s heat
Its furnace hot
With scalding tears
Grant me the pain
Of searing heart

Save me from this tedium
The sluggish swell and
Gloomy ponderousness
Of grief, exhausted by its


Thursday, September 12, 2013


Majestic pillars
In silent solemnity
Guardians of
Cathedral simplicity
Filtered light
Through stain glassed
Leaves of green
And haunting melody a
Single chant of
Solitary bird
Crystal note flung heavenward
Ascends into the canopy

Wardens of their history
Told in rings and
Wisdom earthed
Custodians of secrets
Whispered on winged winds
Pondered with slow rising sap
They’ve seen it all
Unperturbed by what might be
Storms still to be unleashed
Fire’s fierce fury
They have survived
In tranquil splendour


It hung suspended
Uncertain whether to keep
Its form, curling claw
Of crimson venom
Or to disperse
Curdling and clotting
Life force

Dissolving, diffusing
Dispersing with beating heart
It coursed down arteries
Clotting flow
And curdling red
From pools of poison
Venom’s bile rose

Inked, but with no pattern
Accumulation of
Inconsequential moments
The baleful eye and curling lip
The cutting comment
The slow incision
Of shames’ tattoo

Tattoo unmarked on skin
But cut the soul
And inked it in derision
Now poison turns
And rises in a frenzy
Roiling rage
Behind my smiling lips

I know your arrogance
Despise your pomposity
Your craven need to hear your voice
Your desperate requisite to be right
A cockerel that crows too loud
Will soon strut the yard
Dumbfounded at his headlessness

Should I be kind?
Should I understand your pain
Should I be merciful?
I am not god

I detest you and despise you.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013


Silent expiration
Slow cessation of inspiration
Life’s stimulus
Not lost
Simply reflected
Mirror in this time, misted
And breathed out
Into another time

Exhaled gently 
Across space
Particles of humanity
Blown through eternity
Into another time
Uncurling, so the breathing out
Is breathed in
Into our other selves

Our other selves
Those parts we left behind
Forgotten in birth’s canal
Wait, in parallel time
Shadows of our truer self
And breathing in our passing breath
Resurrect once more
Into life

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Dark Lover

Brooding darkness
Etched with silver
Fractured reflection
In inky velvet

Stepping through
Mottled shadows
Naked, in ecstasy, advances
Merging with the night

Stepping into her wet embrace
She parts with advancing steps
Then folding back

Her cold enticing, exciting
Tumescence arousing
In silent clasp
Of moon’s hoary light

By her pull
Tidal force
Of erotic chill

His hardness
Contrasted to her softness
She flows around the
Firmness of his form

Cupped, he raises
Her to his lips
Kissed in silver light
With waters droplets

Rhythmic beat exploding
Ecstatic intensity
Globules of his being
Cast into her flowing


Water teasing,
Played catch me if you can
Lisping waves
Ripples, lapping, chasing
Over sodden sand

The hiss of droplets
Left behind
Sighs of expiration
Absorbed in greedy sand
Soaked but never satisfied

Depressed imprint of a foot
Washed in salt
Disappearing impression
Sand swept clean of
What had been

Strands of light,
Delicate, fragile
Glimmers, hovers
Not knowing where to settle
Diaphanous frame

In the space between
Glimmer light and sodden sand
I, dancing molecules
Coalesced fragments of the past
In silent wonder, wait

For my passing
The gentle hiss
Of times refraction
The sweeping clean

Of what has been

Friday, September 6, 2013

Frustrated Woman

She rose from whoring in her sleep
Cold sweat from fetid dreams
Flesh hot
From secret kisses

Beside her, her man
Slept content
Having with indecent haste
Satisfied his desire

A spurt, he thought
Made him a man
To her an object
Of contempt

Her orgasmic rage
She rose
In discontented hate

Dressing as a spider might
In lace
A web to catch a man
With blousy breast

Fish net tights
To hold scattering thighs
And boots
To grind him down

She hunted and prowled
Seeking a man to kiss
To warm her lips
With human flesh

Vicious, she flexed red talons
And spat with ferocity
The rage of menstrual cycles
Indignant at the failure of her flirting

Raised her voice in desperation
And sought the gods
To grant her oblivion

From the prison of conjugal frustration

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Reflections in the Mirror Looking Back - No 8

 Oak Tree of Childhood Memory

I attended a poetry workshop for Poet’s Week in Perth Western Australia.  One of the exercises we did was to write a poem with each line beginning with a verb.
I ended up doing a short poem on the oak tree that was in the field next to my Aunties place in Northern Ireland.  We would go there on holiday once a year.  One year I can remember being old enough to sit in the tree.  It is a memory that has stayed with me and more importantly, it is the sensory and sensual memory of that tree that remains in me.

Sit, caught in your embrace
Listen to your rustling whisperings
See childhood horizons stretched
            to fields edge
Feel pools of sun dappled warmth
            Lick my skin
Shelter in the safety of your rough limbs
Watch patchy blue sky
            From behind your curtain of green
Touch the texture of your hardened strength

Rodin's - The Kiss

Marbled perfection
Skin petrified white
Twisted embrace
Fused love’s desperation 
Seeking to be held
Before the gates of hell

Frozen kiss on stone cold lips
Blank eyes, forever shut
In unceasing penitential prayer
That love would re-ignite
And grant to a hardened heart
Redemption of human touch

Marbled beauty chiseled
To survive the heat of hell
Human beauty less permanent
Sags, withers, wrinkles
And leaves
Ashes at the gate of hell

The embracing couple depicted in the sculpture appeared originally as part of a group of reliefs decorating Rodin's monumental bronze portal The Gates of Hell, commissioned for a planned museum of art in Paris.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Presence at Breakfast

I saw it fall
Before I felt it

It fell in the space
Between your words

Somewhere between God and God
Past’s phantom in the present

Cross breakfast’s remnants
The cup, the plate

No last supper
The days first break of fast

It slid through glass door
Ray of light reflected on the floor

Light split into rainbowed brilliance
Divine comedy of past promise

Or just the scientific result
Of reflected light through glass

In the space between your words
In slant of rainbow light

I felt shadow’s weight
Of yester year

The time when hope knew
When faith was sure and certain

Once I grieved for what had been
Now it’s more an inconvenience

A niggling scar
Reminding me of what I’d been

Restless in remembrance
Yet with no desire to return

Besides there’re angels there
To bar the way from going back

The angels know

There is no return

Monday, September 2, 2013

Father Forgive Me

Father forgive me
For I have sinned
I have missed the mark
I’ve done wrong
I’m sorry
Forgive me

Father forgive me
For I got caught
Grant me your grace
I’ll take care
Next time
Not to get caught

Father forgive me
You said you would be faithful
If I just asked
Now I ask
Just take the guilt
The sin was good

Father, I sinned
Yet it was good
I was alive
As I missed your mark
But I hit mine
And it was great

Father I’m not certain
I sinned
The guilt is not so great
And I am not so sure
It really was that wrong
It felt so right

Father I forgive you
Forgiveness flows two ways
I forgive the disappointment
You are not the God
I thought you were
And for the pain you caused to me

Father I forgive you
For in the end
You need me
Perhaps more than I need you
For who is God
Without a man?

Angels Breath

Tide of silver vapour
Exhalation of angels
Who wander through the night
Who’ve roamed too far from heavens gates
Too far, to find the light
Yet hoped to slip between man’s dreams
And in between two times find home

With angelic distraction
They prayed
Imploring supplications
That from the vale of concrete cathedral
They would find celestial gates
Yet desperate supplications
Rose misty white

No gates, no dreams
They walk the darkness of man’s night
And sing songs of wistful longing
The outpouring of their grief
Turns the world foggy white
Space compressed, reduced
Sounds dulled in muted grief

Hung in space
Casting its spectral glow
Turning matter into shadows
And shadows, ghostly reality
Brief ethereal witness

To another reality