no. 114

joining the circus


when i pluck up my courage

when i become more brave

i will leave everything behind

and join the circus


i will begin as the mid-life-crisis attraction

banal to spectators, yet strangely

the most sought-after performer

of hot-flash wails

and hormonal mood-swings

in running mascara

i will bemoan the coming of 55 and 60

as i bound around the stage comedically

in search of a cane to ease

my soon-to-be aching joints

i will attempt to regain youth in


perfecting clown-like standing splits and bridge

in the name of showbiz i will dress provocatively

in sequined bodysuits that highlight

my knobbly elbows and knees

sucking in my protruding gut


after many years, hundreds of shows,

i will transition

and become the self-assured


reminiscing about days past

regaling a tale of young love

as gamine acrobats

theatricize the exquisite

blossoming of life

my rheumy eyes shining

i will have a wreath of flowers

in my white curls

and a rocking chair to sit upon

i will smile benevolently at the

audience, who hang on my every word


at the imploring of the ringmaster

himself a crotchety mustachioed fellow

who desires the limelight

even more than i

i will urge my nonagenarian body

to assume the form of a spritely


that which i always wished to be

he will entreat me to join him

in a waltz

and the spot will trail us around

the ring, the only star in the dark

night of the big top

(written 15 september 2019)


no. 113


he holds her

the arch of her back, her heart

in the palm of his hand

they stand

barely moving

she gives him leave

to proceed

they sway

the reach of his leg

the wīnd of her arm

as it curves

in that manner

peculiar to the embrace

the cross of her feet

the twist of his hips

all this anticipated

with great consideration

and then the music


(written 1 september 2019)

no. 89


all those brown bodies dancing, swaying skirts, undulating arms

they are a wave

all those brown legs and ankles, tapping rhythm, touching ground

they are a heartbeat

all those brown faces, beaming joy, turning this way and that

they are the sun

all those brown heads, crowned with leaves, exuding light

they are the soul

let me get lost in that wave, that heartbeat, that sun, that soul

it is mine and not mine

in some other life i feel it must have been mine

now the brown body is all that i have

the brown legs and ankles

the brown face

the brown head

that is all I have, i cannot claim the rest though i can love it from afar

let it wash over me, get lost in it

allow it to remind me of that life so long ago

mundane musing the thirty-fourth

cleaning day

never thought my domestic life would be

like an old hollywood musical

(a lot less sparkle, a lot more dusty-dingy)

not entirely devoid of self-made melodrama

i find myself strangely breaking into song

a fugue state in which i dance an 8-beat phrase

to the pop-hits of the day


to fill the space between loads of laundry

and emptying the dishwasher

insert jazz hands and fosse-esque hip roll

reorganizing our props for the millionth time

setting the stage for reality

(written 8 may 2018)


no. 70


unbearable surge of heat

fingers and toes meet

arms and legs stretch


heart and lungs fetch

oxygen to the brain

tendons and ligaments strain


eyes and ears sense

muscles and skin tense

clothes are cast away


thoughts and actions stay

forced in a pattern to hold

resultant actions are bold


oh how the arms move

happily bound to the groove

that binds body to the drums


held in vibrational thrums

it didn’t happen by chance

we humans were made to dance

(written 12 april 2018)