When the news broke, we danced.
I danced beneath an alien sky.
Plants bloomed: I tasted guavas
firm and sharp upon my tongue.
Trees flung their roots into the air,
rivers reversed to flow uphill,
stars spun cartwheels, the moon
embraced the sun and clouds
kissed the mountain when the
news broke. Born in freedom, now
we owned our freedom. We clasped
our hands in prayer with the dead.
When the news broke, we sang.
I sang, softly, long forgotten songs.
Squeezed awkwardly between the round completeness
of 10 and factored convenience of 12,
11 is the odd one out. We don’t have
11 fingers or toes; we never buy
11 rolls, or eggs, or long-stemmed roses
for our lover. In binary notation
its digits become the three of us, on our
terrace with coffee and scones in the sunlight
and birdsong of June, while the radio plays
Test Match Special and 11 extends its
parallel arms towards the unbounded sky.
This is a square poem: there are 11 syllables per line and 11 lines.
over the gravel
to my flowerbeds, where hostas
that I had tended so carefully have been reduced
to tattered shreds. A robin perches among panicles of lilac as you approach
with buttered scones and coffee. Light slants through leaves, glistens the slime trail silver. Everything contributes to the dazzle of this day – even snails.
This Fibonacci poem was first published in The Fib Review Issue #41
Among vetch and dandelions,
hollow shells, inhabitants gorged
by blackbirds whose songs tremble
in summer’s heat, you emerge -
wrap around my calves, bind
my arms, entwine my throat, caress
my neck, my ears – insidious
as haar that creeps in from the sea
to steal the sun. Overhead, siren
insistence of oystercatchers, while
beneath the hawthorn bush
a magpie tilts its head. Across
years and continents,
we cannot decohere.
This poem was first published in Dust Poetry in May 2021.