Photograph (c) Reena Walking, available at (click to go to website)

In response to dVerse Poeticsprompt.

I’d nurture those expanses why not?
far across where the horizon smiles, too long
for it to be coincidence. Its cowardly
cold distance, its barrier; laugh at me will you?
Come closer! let’s settle this, man to man,
Craven! I shout, outshout planes overhead
those that feel like pinpricks with their decibels,
like insatiable crows feasting on memories’, desires’ soft tissue.
To scare them away, I need wings. Stop boasting, share, you dumb bird!
Of course you won’t.
I’ll eat more fish, to garner strength.
If I pray to planes, one
will in its pity
enable my ascension. So I’m taught.
Then this meddling ocean
will be no more
than a sweet lake is
to a pelican’s flight on its strong fearless wings.

The floor is incomplete,

The air is incomplete,

The smile of a Cuban woman selling vegetables at the corner of the street is incomplete,

The thought is incomplete,

The riding to work is incomplete,

The coming back home is cruelly incomplete,

The feeling of mild satisfaction is incomplete,

The reassuring presence of common sense is incomplete,

The shopping list is incomplete,

The night is incomplete,

The sleep is incomplete,

The waking is incomplete,

The evening out, drinking is incomplete,

The handing in of assignments is incomplete,

The talking to friends is incomplete,

The lack of somebody watching Glee, Good Wife actually hurts,

The reading is incomplete,

The song is incomplete,

The frustration at general stupidity of people is incomplete,

The frustration at particular stupidity of oneself is incomplete,

The writing of poems in secret is incomplete,

The incipient measuring of ideas is incomplete,

Those tears are incomplete,

Perception is incomplete,

Reflection is incomplete,

The family is incomplete,

Life is incomplete,

Because you’re not here.

Come to me.

I hate the mirrors of the world, held up to my face screaming

20-year-old poets, schoolfriends with PhDs from Cambridge

One, even a journalist whiz-kid, reminding of that dumb dumb ticking of seconds

That rise like mould on the substance of youth

Already pretty much cemented by the time.

The world forgets me, is “sorry”, knows “that

This letter is sure to come as a disappointment for me” but

“the calibre of applicants was outstanding this year” and

“the competition stiff”. “Many of high-quality”

Have been left stranded on the self-erected island of hope

While the banner and the crest were quietly rolled down.


There comes eventually calmness in failure, that allows at least

Enjoyment of things which otherwise would only be

Of weak sentimental significance, like

A comment under your blog post with a new poem

An understanding of a difficult passage by Habermas

20lb less on the bathroom scale,

A sip of red wine, so nice, at this price!

A sight of the sea, at last.


Disappointment is too quaint a word

To do justice to that rot, which gets pushed back

By happy trifles, that sets mellifluously on

The dulled consciousness. Relief is so frustrating

In its fickleness.