From my window
black sea glistens
like mollusc skin

You drank Rioja because the smell and taste reminded you of bullfights and the blood that fell as the Matador plunged his knife into the bull’s neck, twisted, cut out a life. We talked of fiesta’s and Catholic processions, you watched the girls pass in the heat of the midday sun and I wondered how long before you hung me out to dry. We followed every wind of the Camino’s twisted trail passing in the footsteps of St James the Apostle, touching studded doors for your absolution, I irately refused to believe in sin. It took us three days to drive there in air conditioned splendour while beside the dusty road small boys took a month with tall staves and rucksacks to arrive at our destination. The first night in Santiago De Compostella we watched the violin players plague tourists with their waist coated pounce at romance. I listened to your dissertations on food, on women, on life, thinking what a pity it was that I’d fallen in love with misogynistic arsehole. Later I watched you light candles in the Cathedral and when I asked you what they were for you told me you were praying for a baby.

From my window
black sky
light so fickle
it implodes.


Trees shaded brown around the cricket green, the Botanical gardens have returned to calm with the winter demise of Japanese tourists and Americans snapping Oxford life on street corners. The bicycles pass and repass, we listen to Mahler and watch sunset fade across St Catherine’s Quad, we talk of fidelity, mine is staunch and squeaky clean. I’m in love with the curve of your thighs, the darkness of your eyes and the pristine eloquence of your mind, we argue over Marlowe and Shakespeare, Marvel and Rochester. There’s a small dark girl with a famous mother who follows you, licking her lips and one empty night when I was lacking you did the deed and then just had to tell me. I left the country took a ride to Italy crossing Alpine pass fighting off uninitiated passes from your friends. You left me in a dignified, so very English fashion with loads of letter writing and tea taking, I was eighteen the year my Grandfather died, arranging my first coffin, the colour of the flowers, the holding up of the bereaved. At his funeral my mother screamed abuse and I stood my ground by my Grandmother’s side watching the rain fall, snorting cocaine for the first time

Why walk in dreams
when you can fly?



You always ascertained that fidelity was inside our heads, that if I dreamt of another man I was being unfaithful.. I dreamt of other men pretty much every night for seventeen years but it was never about sex, that would have been too easy, it was about a meeting of minds somebody who knew that I had one , whereas according to you my passions were a hobby and my writing a self indulgent litany of lies. Try telling that to Simone De Beauvoir.

It’s taken half a lifetime
to devise and revise
the burnt out patterns
of a haunted fate.

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