Tumbleweeds roll,
a dusty screen door
screams in the dusk,
a line of rust marks
the horizon.

A red gingham oilcloth
gaily covers a kitchen table,
his mother’s favourite,
rosemary in a jar
gives a homely touch,
he stands by the sink
peeling potatoes,
a half drunk beer
on the draining board,
a question mark
furrows his brow
at the screech,
his reverie broken.

She enters,
with a comma
on each cheek,
framing his heart.





The street runs like a dark mist,
rain swiftly catches cold,
streetlights grab the sidewalk,
an embrace of stone necessity.

A hooded faceless figure
throws a still glowing cigarette
into the flowing gutter – phssst
– extinguished now
they ride the pipes together
to the underworld.

A lonely rat sniffs a roller-door,
whiskers slick against his cheeks,
I step aside and find the moon
on the other side of my umbrella.

Strains of cheerful chatter
beckon from just around the corner,
with purpose now, I stride afresh
towards the harbour of my love’s face.

A Ray of Light

You walked into the room – a ray of light,
your masquerade costume, my ray of light.

You whispered, “my beloved”, my heart soared,
Your face, a precious bloom – a ray of light.

Unworthy feelings banished, I flew high
Above the deepest gloom, your ray of light.

We lightly tripped together, love’s pavanne,
Breathless; into my womb, new ray of light.

And those who doubt love’s transforming magic,
Sweep them clean with a broom, heart’s ray of light.

And if dark days descend on you, my love,
Then I would expel your doom, dear ray of light.

My soul is bound with crimson threads to yours,
Many summers on life’s loom – love’s ray of light.


Do visit dVerse for Samuel Peralta’s (aka Semaphore) wonderful post on the Ghazal as a form. This is the first time I have attempted to write a ghazal. It was very challenging to say the least.

Here is an extract from Samuel’s explanation of the form:

“Ghazals are beautiful poems, originating in Arabic verse from the sixth century, written traditionally about poetically physical or spiritual love, with a melancholic air of separation or longing.

Made famous in the Western world by the modern translations of works by Rumi and Hafiz, these translations unfortunately have been the source of much confusion over what a ghazal is.

Classic ghazals have a strict form and structure – similar to a Petrarchan sonnet. In trying to be faithful to the ancient poet’s words and expression, translators had to forego the structural framework of the classical ghazal in English.”

 This is my attempt to remain true to the form. I couldn’t get my name into the last couplet

FormForAll: On Ghazals and the Ghazal Sonnet


A slight


ripples almost

deep beneath
the river’s skin

she skips a stone
across the water
hoping it won’t sink
into the slime
where fat eels lurk

stars glisten
in the warm sky
as he farewells
a floating lotus lantern
hoping for a true love
to appear

she sees a bright flame
floating in a lotus

she walks back
along the riverbank

a chance encounter

she bumps into him
and so wheels turn


OpenLinkNight ~ Week 78

A Sketch

With brash bravura
she puts on her Asian face,
and spruiks her authenticity,
her home a tiny island
with a bustling city,
her face shows traces
of curious seafarers, Portugese
who sailed east and south
and east beyond the rim,
they did not fall,her heart
bleeds dreams of red and gold,
untold riches found
in shopping malls …

She speaks only English,
with clipped end consonants,
her ancestral tongues
are silenced with her full

acquiescence …

and she searches for
her identity in cinema
and sitcoms.

Tangerine Maze

Tangerine spiders
trapped in amber
walls of the maze,
passages slide
slick under
my fingers.
I tread barefoot
on soft anthracite
wending my way
stepping out
a mother’s prayers
to the heart
where a waterfall
tinkles with
the dreams
of  a young bride
seeking a true love
in her groom
that remains
long after the last
rose petal falls;
that reveres
fecund hips
with ripening seeds
and sees beauty
in  bare branches
and thorns.

Ochre Envelope

Ochre envelope
my post box;
I pull it
a spider runs
on my hand.
I shake the spider
onto a shrub.
The postmark
from USA
a wish

I carefully
a paper knife
draw out
a broadsheet
lit journal
with my poems
in excellent
(even Bukowski
once published

I look
for my poems,
with hands
carefully turning
newspaper pages
too easily torn.

At last
I find my words
then read them
they seem strange,
who wrote them?

I smell
newsprint ink.

For OneShotWednesday