Three bluetongues reside in our steep bush garden
of sandstone ledges and the stumps of fallen trees.
One is content to doze under a rock while around her
everyone chatters; one lost the pointy end of its tail
Her mother remembers how in the end
she died of third-degree burns from a kitchen fire,
and she can’t get over it, the cup of tea
her daughter made her every day
The springing point was where they took off from,
where the impost, set on good footings,
joined the arch and assured its leap and span
of water’s being there yet flowing on.
Nothing is whiter,
like clouds with the sun inside them.
Nothing is smoother,
like clouds and the moon beside them.
I was reading a poem in that upstairs sunlit room
when I looked up and thought I saw you, Harry,
standing beside the window across from the apartment
where laundry hung outside like a fireman’s ladder snaking
Take the Dasslers, for example: even with
a buggy and two horses they were walking –
leaving it all, turning their backs, quitting
What you say
could very well
Now you have seen the elephant and heard
from an ex-student who blogs an elegy
to his lost left leg (his transfemoral amputation),
and a friend (you visit him in emergency)
The Peter Porter Poetry Prize – now open to all poets writing in English – is one of our most prestigious prizes of its kind. Read this year’s four shortlisted poems.... (read more)
You are seething; I am worried.
We have read the Greek myths.
This anger of yours feels like
a distant thunderclap