Out of the bloom

It’s another hot morning

Sweat sits neatly

On the inside of my wrists

Wets my cuffs

And cools me

I’ve taken some time out

You see

From that town

To this country retreat

Where my body is supposed to breathe

I think it’s working?

Because my mind is in one place

Tapping to the beat

Of breakfast jazz

And it all comes together

For one short weekend

Out of the bloom

Monday to Friday

First you find a moment

To pause for 40 minutes

Relax your body

Drop your weight a little lower

Below your waist

Your blubber resting on your hips

At ease with yourself

And as we set off

Everyone stiffens a little

To avoid touching

Or seeing

You reach up

Hand in cough

Or sneeze

Or something far worse

Until the red light

And a voice that tells you

We’re taking a break

So you bend your elbow

And wait

Until it begins again

35 minutes to go

I trace the mountain tops

I trace the mountain tops

with my eyes

and now my pencil too

scratching, outlining the tip

I dip and duck into creases

I shade and shadow

shallow edges

and dark ridges

black and white

I use my fingers now

letting them walk

across cliff face

and jump down

so I have to bend knuckle

to reach back up

to sharper edges

that cut my skin

as I graze the points

and then my hand

falls downwards

as I reach the end of the cliff

and I dip

cold

into icy waters

20.3.18

She knew we were watching

and everyone else

As she led her parade

of butter skin

and salted and bleached hair

past boys who shouldn’t be looking

and girls who couldn’t stop

because these newly bronzed baby faces

are kissed and caressed

by our eyes

and they savour

the judgement

that imprints on their damp skin

and they pretend it’s a compliment

but this compliment

will bite them tomorrow

when they look in the mirror

and see our eyes looking back

 

‘Battle of Love’ by Pablo Picasso

These entangled lines have secrets

that lurk in the creases

of the bubbled bodies

that bend and fold

around bed and bedpost

Is this desire, really?

or is this stylish rape

embellished with paints

a ‘love’, you say?

between who?

between victim and beast

is that a leg? or arm?

or is that insides coming out

not so glamorous anymore

 

Is this art, now?

Is this art?