A poem about taste:
Picked as buds before they open –
tight-packed petals folding back
in purple-feathered blooms –
till then they’re all about defense,
even the inner, most translucent leaves,
more tender than the naked skin
of new-born mice, are tipped with thorn,
heart guarded by a thicket dense enough
to stifle breath and strangle.
An artichoke takes patience to prepare.
Steam or boil the best part of an hour,
cool. You’ll need a bag or bowl
to catch discarded leaves, mayonnaise
or golden melted butter to dip
the fleshy bottoms of each petal
and slide them through clamped teeth.
It tastes simultaneously
robust and delicate –
difficult to define,
with cream and chicken.
This thistle vegetable
requires time, it’s all about
teeth, tongue, lips and palate.
The final denouement is worth
your wait – the long un-robing,
the extended foreplay. Eat
so you may understand why hunters
believe that they consume
the virtues of their quarry’s character
while nibbling on his heart.
A Skeltonic verse:
go out to tea
just to see
It could be
marvels tame, but cute
a scarlet newt.
More extravagant and weird
the man with beard
His simple trick
made me quite sick!
What makes things tick?
I think I might
fairies, elves, and djinns,
on lonely moors,
creepy tours –
so de rigueur
could cast no slur.
A paean to things that happen again and again:
Repeat and Change
There’s comfort in what comes again, same place,
same circumstance, same when. I like to know
the sun will rise, without fail, no surprise,
like to watch the moon change phases, raise
my arms, chant my praises to her lambent
lovely light reigning softly over Night.
They form a frame for Life’s chaotic play
which tumbles us through changes every day,
shifting boundaries so willy-nilly
we are brought up short and silly, confused
as to what happens next; annoyed, perplexed,
intrigued and entertained, stressed by sameness,
stressed by change, loving both what’s old and strange.
Their punctuation to my day and night
helps stave off fright, when every instinct says
to run away, I stay to play another day.