Our future was a sky sprinkled with daisy stars.
Sitting on the Murwillumbah XPT homeward bound,
eyes tremble, tears water-fall dry skin,
choking breath as if a swimmer gasping for air.
Was it the explosion of your troubled dreams?
Were your five knuckle arpeggios the last straw?
Through the night, a chaos of dreams: halo of purple
storm clouds, sweet talk as barbed wire, roses powder
to dust. Legs are tight knots of muscle.
With morning, considerations of independence, of being single
content the light. Legs become supple stretches in a cool, free skin.
A white care cruises a straight freeway, open windows winnow the past.
Some symptoms of illness are bandit country:
_________sudden intrusions into our lives,
the treasures of
__________ruddy health shimmied away.
Life margins tumble and slide
_________as night lives with day and day night.
Bodies wither, legs are twigs.
_________Dreams snag on thorns.
Our lives are
____envelopes in the post with no address.
Stick figures stand at crossroads in frayed dusk.
Coloured flags point north
all points on the compass benign,
From nor nor east, words suddenly appear,
____fly through thin air,
____vowels and consonants as wingtips
____feather our closed eyes.
Our eyes open,
____word storms smother bandit country
Diagnostic words return memory of sky,
____solace of light.
Our envelopes are posted abroad.
A lymphoma brings affiliation: disquieting
fears as bedfellows. One, a doppelganger head —
Mars-sunset eyes deep sunk, prune wrinkled hide,
cheek bones protruding like clenched fists,
hovers above the bed of respite. In the silence,
this fellow-feeling fissures the lines of my ordinary features.
The chemical triad: Epirubicin, Vincristine and
Prednisolone are calligraphies rewriting cells and
DNA strands with recombinant healing.
The hologram dissolves to the high blue nothing.
My heart shines with golden flowers
as these blooms adhere the known world.
Peter Mitchell lives in the Rainbow Region of NSW, writing poetry, short fiction, memoir, literary criticism and a range of journalism. His collection of poetry, The Scarlet Moment (Picaro Press) was published in 2009.