Wednesday, 20 April 2011

A Chip of Turquoise

the freedom of a bird to fly away

This day has been
between the birds:
a fantail snipping insects

in the autumn light, a blackbird
giving some rooftop-cheek,
a sparrow boldy hopping

under chairs and tables,
a seagull perched
on the playground's climbing frame.

As I walked to work,
I saw over the pine trees
at the golf course, a squadron

of magpies; heard the death-defying
of a three-magpie fight.

As I passed the race-course,
I saw a cluster of mushrooms.
No, it was children in white crash helmets,

riding ponies. Today it may all be
about the freedom
of a bird to fly away

and the constraint of reins.
Today a fire engine visited work.
The children worked the hose.

"I made it rain", one child said.
Today an artist visited
and he sketched turtles

and transformers
for the children.
"Draw a poo", Zain said to him

Such a four-year old thing to say. 
Today it was finger-paint 
and streaming pictures

of dripping dye.
When I got home
I headed for the shower

first thing and while drying my feet,
noted the last
of this summer's toenail polish,

right on the tip
of my big toes; a chip
of turquoise.

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