brittle

I approach you

the same way

I approach

a rusk dissolving

in my mouth.

once broken

into pieces,

bit by bit,

you are easier

to take in.

pushed slightly

to my palate,

I wait patiently

for you to go

soft and delicate.

right then, I’ll push

a little harder

with my tongue:

firmly determined

I remain like this.

as your brittleness

is mellowed;

I can taste

you everywhere –

and swallow.

runaway

I have squeezed out my city

for its mellow sweet waters at dawn

and bitter fluorescent juices at dusk.

I drank from ever-interrupted flows,

took in the whole load: gagged, swallowed.

I have squeezed out my city

for rivers to entrench themselves

for rivers not to feed, but to become the sea.

I liked to call its waves coincidence,

although I, the moon, had summoned the tide.

I have squeezed out my city,

over and over with my bare hands.

that means: wrung out, pressed, extracted

until the last drop died;

cried, as I myself ran dry – and away. 

Shakespeare’s vanishing anagram

Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?

All damp, I tease you. Shame’s tremor

hums ahead. I act a role, so play me

as you create hell’s metaphor.

I am a sad muse, teach me hope.

Come, I’m all yours, Master

My spasms harm as I rot.

Still, you are there

to hear my praise.

I compare thee

to a red rose,

I presume.

Please,

dare

me.

May be a reminder

maybe you never were

more than a reminder

of the  sugar cravings

I’d oppressed ever since

I was thirteen years old

 

maybe I never was

meant to pick her amber

hair off your cardigan

as you put too much fake

honey in my flat white

 

maybe my body was just not

ready to endure more

winter days in May

that seemed so cold to you

and awfully close to me

 

and surely it’s not you

who’s lying here right now

since you’re 8000 miles away

while I am in my childhood bed

again – clutching a hand that is not yours

The key

Three keys are lying

In the clean and empty

Kitchen cupboard,

Ready to be taken away

By the lady who’s

Checking the flaws,

Our flaws, the ones

We did our best to wash away

Four days in a row,

With acid and with baking soda.

Three keys aligned,

Three keys, not four:

My key had slipped

Through the hole of

My white tweed coat

Some time, long ago.

Maybe I’ll find

That missing one.

Then I would sneak

Through this door

That will lead

To a life

Which won’t be ours anymore.

The photos on the wall

Won’t show you or me or

Anyone we know.

The air won’t smell

Of the cinnamon granola

I made the day before.

You won’t be lying

Asleep on the sofa bed,

Waiting for me

To wake you up.

And still,

I might be keeping that key.

Just because

It once opened and 

Shut our world.

Cape Nostalgia

Her soprano to my strum
Under stars on someone’s patio.
Sea-breezed highway rides
Stapled to his waist.
Honey-infused coffee, twice
At Dolce: 9 am.
Dozing to her heartbeat
Having conquered paradise.
Carpet, fire, popcorn, blankets
As rains rage outside.
All shapes and neon colours
Running the city at night.
Brownies on my backyard-floor,
Just because we could.
Tablecloth like sugar-coating,
Or like smoke.
Giggly, tipsy, and best cheesecake in the world.
Twerking, jumping, sweating,
Hair sticking to hot heads.
Walking home and feeling safe;
And feeling it still.

Keeper’s Haiku

Like the red pencil

That’s carried around always,

Easily erased.

 

Like the old pencil

That you still have in your bag

Blunt, but not broken.

 

Inconsiderable,

Never jeopardizing space,

Don’t dispose of me.

Trust

I was still wearing

Your necklace. The whole

Golden weight of trust

Dangling against my

Collar bone, as he

Grabbed me at my waist.

Cape Winters

Capetonian winters are orange at night.

When I wake up in the middle

Of an unsettling dream.

Capetonian winters seem orange at night.

For weeks now I counted the stars

From my bed’s safest spot.

 

The wind is disguised as thunder these days

And it’s the city lights, I think,

All mingling with the mist,

Which make Capetonian winters look orange

At night, when I make space for you,

In my bed’s safest spot.

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