The darkened room with the river running through it
I woke, the bed adrift, the pillow scented
with somebody else’s perfume. Cast off
I built my own boat, found my hands
covered with paint the colour of orangeade,
striped like the ginger cat, my figurehead,
tail curled round my ankles as I dropped
anchor somewhere four hundred feet
skywards. Discovered stars in daylight, the moon
in a glass of water. Unbuilt my studio, unpainted
every picture I’d ever made. Went underground.
Lost hope. Until that desperate night when some stranger
smiled and I realised it could be for me. I could kiss
anyone I pleased. I did. Until my mouth
got tired. This time the boat was bigger, and I was afraid.
Eventually I found the horizon balanced
me and not-me. It made a grim peace.
I fell over you. I said yes. I said yes, I said
Yes, and the sun came up all night.
Christ, writing poems with a fractious toddler hanging off your leg is not fun. No time and no energy today, though I loved the idea of a string of light bulbs. Best I could do.