Saturday, April 9, 2016

Raewyn Alexander (b.1955)

‘aged famous rockers tour the world’

I explain to the homeless man outside our supermarket
by a tree which serves to hold shopping trolleys back
(some wander in high winds as steel renegades across traffic)
he wanted to know any news
so I spoke and pretended I didn’t remember him
stood downwind to avoid the stench of ancient unwashed denims
we loaded my groceries into the car boot together
while I talked and he listened as if we’d married
stayed in the same house for reasons of children and accounting
stopped any demands for obedience to each other’s rules
but I knew his name and how he liked ice cream
a little melted and yet some still firm
my feelings also thawed enough to take time
desserts and good conversation require a lull
but he tried to tell me we were fated to be together
as if we’d unwittingly signed up for a soppy romance movie
and soon his buddy whispered to him ‘he’d told him so’
they shambled away in late afternoon gold with leaves falling
I wondered for a few minutes what could’ve been if I’d chosen him
instead of the vampire with good map reading skills
who knew how to sneak into my room at night
to sit with his smile for a brain and wait
for my eyes to open then conditioning to polish my reaction
over and over again the same secret
known observer a fright – media man in leather without a pen
but he drew fantasies with perfect recall in black and white
so clean these bare stories in the wind and rain

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