Reservoir (Minus the Dogs)

The lake shimmers, side to side

it glimmers, the topaz sky

held in its eye as a duck

swims across the still sheet,

breaking glass in its wake.

A goose approaches

up the concrete landing ramp

orange webbed feet stamp,

the waddling of its tail white

cotton reflects in my t-shirt.

Orange beak hisses welcome,

hisses for bits of bread

which are carefully thrown.

Blue eyes deep as the water

catch the sun in a cloud break,

tongue clicking in the breeze

like a loose flagpole. Children shout,

chasing green head brown ducks

that spread purple-striped wings

to escape excited chatter –

they conquer all matter

as they soar in the air,

as they swim through a swell,

as they waddle towards us

dinosaurs have inherited the Earth.

Charmer

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His foot taps along and his blue cardigan shakes

as he breaks into familiar song, wispy white hair

frantic about his ears, dancing along in time to

heads, shoulders, knees and toes, knees and toes.

 

He bends and grates as he stands up straight,

down he goes again, a rheumatic metronome

for his harmonica, his playing fleeting, hypnotic;

a pretty woman stands transfixed, mouth open.

 

Heads, shoulders, knees and toes, knees and toes,

heads, shoulders, knees and toes, knees and toes,

and eyes and ears and mouth and nose,

heads, shoulders, knees and toes, knees and toes.

 

The old man pogos in time to the rhythm,

he gyrates and quakes, blowing hard, eyes shut

feeling each note as it tumbles from cracked lips,

reeling, he plays each joyous bar like it’s his last.

A Bird’s Eye View of Victoria Park (Those Damned Gulls)

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The golden stone glows, rich with midday sun,

man-made cliffs that bookend a verdant ocean

of bathing sun-seekers and children cut loose,

chasing balls across the grand green expanse,

flitting past us like flies, riding bright plastic scooters

along grey tarmac rapids as the current sweeps us

onwards towards an island, a monolithic outcrop,

a gleaming rock where we stop, to preen and to roost.