Woke in the night

sea salt & candlelight

the down on your chest golden.


You sleep like a child

arms open heart wild

beating to the seagull cry.


I’m lost in the salt marsh

of this: seamlessly changing horizon

where you wheel  & dive


a magnet for secrets.


You promise treasure

the buried kind & something in me

believes in our connection.


But baby I’m lost in the salt marsh

the changing horizon of you

nothing solid to cling onto


before the tide comes in.


(For David Emeka Kalu )


You’re tangled up in politics

you’ve drowned yourself  in ink blots

Jesus Christ redemption

is your full time job.


Here rhetoric & prose

lie hand in hand: dug down deep in

African Bad Lands where death hisses

where death huddles & colludes.


You’re tangled up in politics

all dried up & superimposed

no time for living, giving, loving,

you love the whole world.


Love lost in Hero prime time

you know that now’s the right time

to become a martyr to quarter sainthood

to write a testament for what you think is truth.


Beko & Mandela point a way

through beatings & prison cell

you try again to quell

the treachery of despotism.


You’re stitched up in heroism

the word etched on the page

you’re a symptom of the rage

of an entire nation

Beach eclipse


Full moon eclipse

sea squid ink black

we pitch in blind arc

earth hurtles at heaven

stretches out to stars:

beach tilts underfoot


rushes up to meet me.


Chill wind from the North

we beat as one heart

blood pulse through fingertips

hands hold the moment

I turn again to sea, wallow in the sight

& drown myself, drown myself


in moon’s light.


Michael and the angel’s kiss


Joao Angel for me



There was a war

right there,

at the tables edge

and I wasn’t winning.

I surrendered to the theme

surrendered to your thrust

at reality.

It was a war I didn’t choose

you’d bitten it from birth

and between our bites of food

I relinquished hold.

I had no idea why,

just why I wanted you

and you were seduced

by an understanding

you hadn’t yet deduced;

an insight to my core

the light that makes me whole

it was a literacy of souls

a tenderness of minds

that spun us together

and I relinquished hold

of anything that bound

wanted only then and there

to hold you to my breast

and listen to the sound

of our enamoured breaths.

I think it is your war

you’ve bitten it from birth

and I was like an outsider

watching at a wedding.

Your cruelty was curved

you hold it as your truth

and I filtered through your words

wanting only you.

Now I’m lying here alone

wind chimes ringing in my ear

reminding me of mountain pass

the place I call my home

and you’re lying in her arms

listening to her tears

stroking back her hair

and thinking of me.







You always come at night

like the rain like the moon

bring flowers & candlelight

light my spirit light my room


Your kisses taste of spring

another land I  used to own

your body’s soft and warm

takes me in strokes my soul


You found me in a storm

windblown tidal on the beach

collecting sea shells of the past

turned to amber turned to glass


You say that we were meant

to banish darkness open eyed

you always come at night

& I’m grateful for the time


it takes .


Want to




Want to write something big

something to turn you round make you think,

about all those years we hid away

when  why was the only word that touched my lips

why, when we had everything two people need

there was that something missing in between.

Want to write something wild,

to lose the scream I chase inside

I want to take your hand in mine

wipe out the blame ask can’t we try

to find the flame that never came,

I want to write something sweet

to make you smile

and bless your sleep

with gentle memories of me.

I want to bend time back

grab all the wisdom I now know

erase the marks I left on you

reclaim a harvest we both shared

just let you know how much I care.

I want to rip to bits the tag

the price we paid to find myself

I’m here now bright in winter’s frost

and I can’t replace the peace we lost

but if you’d turn around you’d see

that I still love you , and you still love me .

From ”Ultramarine” October diary

Full circle

monochrome skies

driving rain

hung immobile

on Libra’s scales.



Mother, daughter, mother, we wander in wonder scuffed markets searching tissue treasures. Around us the crowds eat spiced food on paper plates, and undulate before you. “Why is everyone staring at me Mum”, because you’re so beautiful because you are a hallowed creation of the universe. Pale skin, luminous eyes black rimmed powerful aquiline symmetry of your face.   We wear our scars lightly, memorise our memories with ease, laugh at the holocaust we are spawned from.  You have an intense confidence, I am your backbone, both our backs are broken, we’ve both fallen.  Life passes in cameo, whistles, like an old French movie.  We talk of men, and I am clueless.


Back then.

Rain falls with the sound of heartbeats on walnut trees, on sand in the courtyard making flurried patterns like a river bed.  The children sleep, beyond my window the hills run into more hills and the tournesol   lies brown and broken, after harvest debris.  Days have their own momentum flushed with the needs of animals, animal needs, to eat, to sleep, to shelter from the driving rain and when spring comes to procreate in the image I have dreamed for them, matching chestnut to grey, high crested neck to proud tail and the lines of lineage that trace back to the Bedouin, my horses, my creations.  In the market sellers shiver, “les noix!!”, the cries of halkers ; huge lorries trundle sacks of  walnuts collected under a blustery sky.   Red faced tourists long gone, the English stalwarts of French village life gather in the cafes drinking coffee and cognac at eleven in the morning.  You and I are braced in our mediocrity as married couples do until one breaks through.  The builders mutter as I pass, you’re engrossed in oil paints painting my body ,painting my face on a huge canvas, I mutter as I pass you, talk to the rain, talk to the animals ,talk to the children, but we have nothing to say, you’re immersed  in deception without knowing it, and I’m burning with a formless anger that gnaws like an anorexic’s hunger I sing it to the forest, wrap it in frozen dreams of escape, am tied to monogamy with a rats tail.



Our bed

is a crucifix

bevelled wood


above a void.


My child

Child on a bridge,

pooh sticks cling to

tumbling stream, ponies

snort at dusk, the lanes

tumble into tunnels.


Owl calls from oak

high above the house,

her frozen arms outhrown

for centuries, as man

comes and goes,.


Child on a bridge,

afternoon is close

and evening stretches

to ensnare us in its

arms of age.


Writing on a wall

love lain and lost,

scattered now

amongst  briars,

on solitary island.


You searched each

twisted path, but I

had disappeared, flung

away this flesh, melted

in the mist of finite tomorrow.



child on a bridge

leaning into stream

nothing held in mind

except movement.







Sky is dark, dark as your

grieving heart: the water’s smooth

invites you in;  take a dip in its inky

depths forget the pain wash off

the sin.


Rain poured down as you left

this town, just  a summer storm

it washed me free, free of everyday

the games you play flew clean



Sky is dark, dark as your

grieving heart , the water’s smooth

invites you in covers your head

& the river bed with its lank green weed

rises up at last to meet you.