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Up the garden path 

Up the garden path, you see
misty dim the Eden entry
gated by a sultry sentry
lonely Asian elm tree.
He of spindly spine
and serpentine
extends a branch to greet
a guiding hand to meet
you, leading to retreat.
 Amid sweet-scented thyme
you linger there and
mount the rocky stair
rough-hewn and spare
rain-spattered now and bare 
of moss.
Through the rhododendron 
rhododendron garden 
floriubunda bowers, dew-beladen
earth is pillowed like a fen 
of feather-petals pink.
And then ...  [excerpt]
                                                   © vmt

Skeltonic verse 

That rainbow in your eyes


How can I write a poem about you

without you and the sun

for you are one?

How can I name the sun

without your colours, blazing

amazing, dancing in your eyes?

Those glistening prisms of delight

glancing light, you gave me once

before I knew

how to name it      love.

It was the element of your surprise

that rainbow in your eyes

that reflected back my sunlight, laughing.

In our parallel, striped orbits

you shone through me when

I twirled my lollipop skirt, on tiptoe

pink and yellow, green and blue      for you.

I was your rainbow too

but we had it backwards      so it seems

for then, it rained

and I awoke in tears      as from a dream.

                                                                            © vmt


From "Wellington Beach and other poems"

Midnight Ferry


The ice parts as she moves

making way, Glenora  

channels through the January bay


and the cold black water

draws into the depths

that somewhere join the pitch

of the horizon.


Shivering, dare I entertain

a night fear, shipwreck fantasy

absurd, unreasoned, real.

As north wind blows

and creaks the mast

the engines churn the floes

at last, determined

ghostly captain at the wheel

straining as she goes

swerving wide across the current

chugging raucous cross the bay ... [excerpt]

                                                                © vmt

From "Mauve You Rise and other poems".  First published in Watershed magazine, winter 2006/07

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