All entries for December 2006

December 18, 2006

Chasing Dandelion Seeds

Chasing dandelion seeds.

How easy is it to become obsessed with you?
With your crayon-blonde hair,
your eyes, painted like my first waterproof jacket
that you tore, chasing dandelion seeds with the dog –
you danced higher than she,
and later, cried harder when you lost.

How easy is to become obsessed with you?
with your square fingernails,
so like our fathers,
I consider that if I bound your hands together,
we wouldn’t be able to tell the difference.

It is easy to become obsessed, to love you,
as I list all the things only I can know,
and all the ways you make me feel,
as I watch you change from fifteen to sixteen,
from my brother to the teenager,
who wears too much aftershave, and too many stereotypes.

As I love you, I cannot help but question you,
to doubt your smile and your laugh,
to complicate your childish utterances;
I cannot know you wholly,
as like the moon your face changes daily.

But you take my hand, and smile,
shielding me, ever protective,
and I squeeze your fingers,
before you run off, chasing the dandelion seeds
dancing across your laughing face.



A god of Asiatic origin who was inserted into the Greek mythlogy: his name is a Semitic word ‘Adon’, meaning ‘the Lord’, and he was worshipped in many places.

Gods fight unseen battles,
creating armour out of
– gold sparks and
flints of lost nature.

Gods love in ways I cannot picture,
as, like the lazy swan who reaches up
to the skies of dreams,
months out of date,
Gods reach out to touch
the things that the dreams are made for.

They are my dreams that fall
- irrepressibly – into sink with you.

Adonis fought to be born,
Struggling against the bark that formed his
Mother’s skin.

With a brittle ferocity, he clawed
Through the endless, unmoving membrane,
That he could not destroy.

Let me out, let me out,
He cried, the imprisoned bird,
Aware of the lock but having lost the key.

She came, her hands soft and melting
The wooden crust disintegrating
At the goddesses touch.

You came spilling through,
Crying into the world,
Spluttering at the heavy air.

But your mother could only watch,
And cry her leafy tears,
Which would collect, and rot, at her feet.

December 14, 2006


Alasdair – Naming You.

I waited for you,
Standing beside the worktop,
Watching you grow beneath our mother’s hands,
Squirming and kicking,
Insistant and fretful.

But you could not escape,
You were tied by a bond that,
Even now, you cannot break.

I would shiver with a loneliness I couldn’t name,
And longed to see you as more than a part,
More than a nameless dream.

Insert –

the missing piece into my wooden jigsaw,
left out on the kitchen table.

Insert –

and play forgetfully because
you will not fit.

Insert –

but pretend the space is still empty;
I cannot dream you are here.

Name you Polly,
my name if I had only
existed twice.

Name you Hester –
a girl who does not like
damp rags across a steaming floor.

Name you Patrick,
cover your mouth,
stifled with mud pies.

Name you Matthew -
let me cry over you,
as, aged fifteen, you let the grass grow on you, a second skin.

Name you and smile,
for I cannot spell
you, and my thoughts as I stray
to my repeated – “a”.

I did not have the chance to worship you,
I cannot want the chance –

If it’s a boy, give it away.

I did not have the chance to take your hand,
and lead you through into the glaring white.

When will it be old enough to play with?

I did not have the chance to breathe
between your first smiles.

Play school.

I did not have a chance to watch you smile,
as I concentrated on seeing you.

I did not give you away,
and I was too old to play with you,
and you got bored,
playing school.

But now I can watch you,
breathing through your cold,
pushing reddened hands through too-long hair,
smelling of overdone deodorant.

Now I can watch you,
see you.

For, now, I can name you.

December 2006

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