The last time I tackled this book of poems
(another copy, from the library)
was on our Honeymoon—the distant foam

(beyond our sunbeds, hissing at the beach)
was laced with jellyfish; the throbbing tide
would drag us quickly off, out of the reach

of any rescuers that might have tried
to dredge us back from the South China Sea.
The lines could never catch, perhaps my mind

was still softened by jet lag, so I’d sleep
until the clouds blew in from the rainforest
to send us back to watch Malay TV

as Orangutans shrank into their nests
and binturongs wrapped their constrictor tails
around thick, swaying trunks as the tempest

blew over in time for our evening meal.
Right now, the sun is squinting through our blinds,
the bills come in and undergarments flail

as the wash cycle clicks from rinse to spin.
Even our little girl, dozing next door,
has come to know the torpor of routine.

The lines that sailed over my head before
all spark to life as I read them again.
Some poems fail on bright, exotic shores—

they need the dry tinder of the mundane.


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. peter litton
    Jul 25, 2012 @ 09:15:10

    Another poem for top twenty consideration.

    As usual, it’s the thoughts a poem generates that make the read worthwhile.
    It’s amazing how an object, a sound, a taste or even a poetry book can bring unbidden memories.
    I guess to an Orang-utang or an Asian Civet your flat would seem a gloriously exotic and exciting place.The familiar is always mundane.


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