Unseasonably, Falling

The sun is blind

The old man said

Steps as elusive as wet clay

Milk blue opals in his eyes

Arm outstretched for leverage

In a mantis feeble invocation

The sky a fleck of spit

The road across the cliffs

A muddy chalk

Suitable for marking games

Of war and hopscotch

Casting stones

One knee bent

The trench foundation deep

In a kind of homage

That winter

We did not eat ice-cream

Thought how you wore

A cardigan like rope

Though really it was unseasonably mild

As late spring dancing

One and two and three and four

The pebble skipping

As if this were

A calm still lake

And not another

Stuttered evening’s fall

Still, a hand that reaches out

Measures time

Quite differently to the straightened mouth

Of discomfited laughter

Dancing with myself

now I am old
I will shine my shoes
until the leather has
a vexatious gleam

From the caldera
I can see the stars
turning against the heavy blue
of premature evening

Elbow gravelled on my chin
as if time were closer here
fingers hooking a crookèd nape
all extraneous distractions
careless and forsworn

Too tight, the laces
left undone, aiglets
trailing like reckless moons
as I (almost) fall
we slowly spin

Old Wednesday

The grey man
Slowly shook his head
My imperfect soul
Will vouch for me
– Me and Shakespeare 
Lost my ticket, somewhere 
Pockets turned out
Like elephant ears
Quite rude
Banging on the cold glass door
Only two allowed
In the waiting room
We are 
On Wednesday afternoons
The sky criss-crossed by snails
The phlebotomist says
The blood coming out
Makes a hissing sound
A minuscule amount, but
Enough for tinnitus 
Feeling quite deflated
Morning birds make lopsided croupier calls
The breaking cloud throws gold coins beneath their beaks
Confused at the taste
There is a spiral
In cat’s fur
Constellations warm
Beneath your hand
With the musk scent
Of rising static  
A brief, intoxicated calm