Ariel’s keep

Only time can elucidate
The depth of blue
Storms dissipate
Pulling confused debris
Out to sea
Endless treasures beneath
Though not a coin
Exchanged
No ill-gotten gain
Wilderness reserve
Sustained our futures' sake
Fables, myths and legends
Barely touch the surface
Canon of heartfelt
Love in its place
Delivered in waves
Washed ashore
Upon fate's call
We might meet
In this place
First, dip the toe
Wade to rocky outcrop
Float to surface
Let the affect
Carry you away
A bond ever-giving
Calling me to stay
Taroona beach, lutruwita / Tasmania

Love that keeps you warm

Finest ink bleeds in time with percussive beats
Knowing well each drop more precious than gold

Unlike the burst of black cloud shrouding fear
Tentacles shooting across infested waters

Knowing where to find the spark for perpetuity
A lifeline in veins of penned prose

Splayed in restless phrases seeking
To be absorbed by stark gaze

On the pure chance her and I might be the same
Apart from desire to pour presence into silence

Stand fast like a tidal wall as passing rush
Tsunami crawls back to capacious sea

Entranced with affect, she pours into me veritable
Encyclopedia of past dreams evading dust of settling

Vain hopefulness turns weather crow 'round
Conjuring up necessary resistance to passing storms

Time together a transfusion
A love that keeps you warm

Bright as the sun

At four o’clock, conscious of his throbbing heart, Levin stepped out of a hired sledge at the Zoological Gardens, and turned along the path to the frozen mounds and the skating ground, knowing that he would certainly find her there…

It was a bright, frosty day. Rows of carriages, sledges, drivers, and policemen were standing in the approach. Crowds of well-dressed people, with hats bright in the sun, swarmed about the entrance and along the well-swept little paths between the little houses adorned with carving in the Russian style. The old curly birches of the gardens, all their twigs laden with snow, looked as though freshly decked in sacred vestments.

He walked along the path towards the skating-ground, and kept saying to himself—“You mustn’t be excited, you must be calm. What’s the matter with you? What do you want? Be quiet, stupid,” he conjured his heart. And the more he tried to compose himself, the more breathless he found himself… He walked on a few steps, and the skating-ground lay open before his eyes, and at once, amidst all the skaters, he knew her.

He knew she was there by the rapture and the terror that seized on his heart… There was apparently nothing striking either in her dress or her attitude. But for Levin she was as easy to find in that crowd as a rose among nettles. Everything was made bright by her. She was the smile that shed light on all round her. “Is it possible I can go over there on the ice, go up to her?” he thought. The place where she stood seemed to him a holy shrine, unapproachable, and there was one moment when he was almost retreating, so overwhelmed was he with terror. He had to make an effort to master himself, and to remind himself that people of all sorts were moving about her, and that he too might come there to skate. He walked down, for a long while avoiding looking at her as at the sun, but seeing her, as one does the sun, without looking.

‘Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy, chapter 9.’

I’ll fly away

A word from you is like
Shock of a cool waterfall
After climbing over canyon

'You are always
In my heart and
In my longing'

An embrace swallows me
Like a river finding
Ocean home forever

'Never possible to leave..
Love-anchor held me there'

Waiting as long day night
Anticipating rare flower
In dense forest blooming

'I had just found
The long-desired way
To your dearest heart'

Staring at stark blue sky
Years wondering weather
Turns so quickly like you

'Of course I want to
Come to you very much as I
Want to come to Heaven'

Mimicry parades in hundreds
Different ways though
Never whispers to you

'Sweetheart I always love you
More dearly than you know'

~ letter by Katharine Lee Bates to Katharine Coman, 1891. In The Love that Dares, by Smith & Vesey, 2022.

Ode to M

Held on tightly
To mournful delightful
Words shedding down
A certain slant of light

Carried me onward
Into my enlightening
Years oft slighted
Hands held tightened

Let go realise
I never knew who
Bold and bright
She was me in spite of

Centuries between
Longing look at frond
A delicate hand
Responds to us not

Forget blue floral
Tongue tied knot
Unraveling over endless
Sails swept away

As long as the storm
Brews on horizon
Grip is tight
Bow turned windward

Fears stilled inward
At first sight
Of love
D’entrecasteux Channel, lutruwita / Tasmania

Part of your world

'Bright young women
Ready to stand

Ready to know
What the people know

Ask them my questions
And get some answers

When's it my turn?
Wouldn't I love?

Love to explore
That shore up above

Wandering free

Wish I could be
Part of your world'

~Ariel, 1989. (C) Disney
Part of that world, by Jodi Benson
The Little Mermaid, illustration by Edmund Dulac

Book Fetish

Under covers 
Slide between sheets
Fingers fondle
Turn a new leaf

Entering into
Worlds unseen
Stars in eyes
Hold and breathe

Drama unfolding
Pushing bounds
Reality dissolves
Dreams are found

Singers bellow
Dancers twirl
Look no further
Bookish girls