after Night Arrows by Robert Brownhill.

You can’t imagine where you are
in the descending umber.
The pull is left & you can’t go back
to the place
you found your bearings.
Don’t turn into the one-way,
that’d be a mistake.                                                
Take the third, not the second on the left.                                                                       
If you don’t, you’ll go round the block &
onto the roundabout,
past the park & back onto the street
you began.


An Evening without Venice

after An Evening still life with red apples and proteas by Margaret Olley.

When the sunlight has faded
all that is left is the background blue,
a window to Venice.
It happens like this
a small thing prompts memory –
the gondola without the oarsman,
full of bright red apples,
the torte at the café near the canal,
the plate now empty.           
Then in the background, always Terra Australis.
As if bird tongues encircle many hairy flowers,
the pink heads fashion a curious geometry.


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