Conference Leave

1 December 2013

All blank, all white, inhaling jellyfish,
coughing up thylacines, my best intentions
entangle, disentangle, bleach to silicon dust.
Scrubbed to translucency, my equilibrium fails,
both scabby knees bleed.

Below the exit sign, you sit, head in hands,
ringlets loose across the nape of your neck, almost
prehistoric, with neither gold chain nor pearls.
Your pen-point idles, uncommitted, no longer blue,
abandons vacant Cartesian grids.

A sketch. Our awkward pharmacology. Three
knocks at the door: counterposed, an illusion
of sirens, fire alarms shaking bamboo blinds,
flashlights, parquetry. Was it something I said,
failed to mention, never considered?

At least my passport is valid. I know
a dozen popular songs. My data have been
analysed: finally, the statistics are complete.
In an atmosphere of collaboration, I offer you
tiger lilies, coconut oil, analgesia.

Beyond our continental drift, the numbness
you covet, a licence to misfold mountain ranges,
to encourage clamber and trip and tumble;
each success, every loss tallied on fossiliferous shale,
the search and destroy we run together.

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