The Trees Will Sleep

Chrystalla,

lost girl,

your pale mark

and mulberry punches

underdressed

in the memory of your old lovers,

their bodies

time-bent with the apple boughs,

Siamese skin

cut from other sky.

 

You must

remember to breathe

in the sincerity of night,

where

those casual hearts still beat

like a pomegranate morning,

and

those two rising suns still loom

deathless

behind your freckled eyes.

 

Karla M.

Goddess

Her face points upward,

snow-covered precipice,

a wing of light

against the city’s blackened cheek.

 

Embark upon the ancient spice trails

of her breath,

follow the Li River

and set sail to Elephant Mountain,

 

a frozen emerald

 shivering in the lemon sunset,

like the ripples in rock-pools

at her feet.

 

Step free from dream’s edge

and pull down the sky,

heaven’s curtain

                                where

 

‘rice grows and the land is invisible,

by the pomegranate water,

                                      in the clear air

                                                   over Li Chiang’.

I, Luna

Shiver

‘neath the ebb and flow of a tide,

your water-bitten skin

off-blue

dripped in night’s inkwell.

 

Lay under her

and she’ll have seen the sun once,

warmer shoulders parting waves,

two eyes wide like cities

blanketed by stars,

 

breathing the same sky,

but in search for clearer seas.

She washes over you,

this

rose-tinted moon,

 

and half-light at dark

in Earth-spun sleep,

she’ll carry you from the shore

to set you free,

let you leave

like driftwood on the ocean.

 

for O.

My Amélie

“I love you in atoms,” I said.

I cannot tell you how it felt when I found you’d gone. You left no note, no footprint to say you came and went in the time between breaths. You took your words with you, smeared my notebook with stiff white paint so I’d no longer know how it felt to be inside you.

You should have taken the picture. I don’t need it to see you, or the way your coffee hair wisps and falls and cradles the perfect heart of your face. The loose-locked frame for your wine-barrel eyes scarring the underside of my own. “Make me black and white,” you’d say. And I did, but still you would breathe colour into the absolute; into the knitted wicker of everything you touched.

I’d watch the summer breeze weave its arms around you like no lover, writer or poem ever could. And how the moon would frame itself on your windowless wall just to watch you sleep. While I mixed brown, you blurred my palette of blues and reds with your thinly fleshed-out form and glossed our canvas in plump shocks of purple and mauve.

The rain beside me smashes like glass. I crack my fingers and remember the way you liked to pierce the crust of your crème brûlée with the cold tip of a spoon. I won’t shake you from these crystal bones; I know I loved you.

“I loved you in atoms,” I said.

Ha – La – Li

(LoveSuicide for A-Dong)

‘And over Li Chiang, the snow range is turquoise

Rock’s world that he saved us for memory  

                  a thin trace in high air…’    – Ezra Pound

 

Cold fingers sketch the mist,

your outline

++++++pencilled

through dawn’s paper napkin.

 

I follow you under rose-boughs

overhung

 

++++++this cobble-road –

a sleeping scar in our giant’s backbone

that feathers ghosts

+++++++++++++++++++across

snow-peached skin.

 

I cup your hands at the crest,

cradling them to me

++++++before leaping

 

and our eyes

+++++++melt

++++++++++++++into the air.