to be spoken to bring him ashore

I am the ladder that will always drench your hair
and I have another rung
so climb carefully
for at the top
the stars you see that are scattered like candyfloss
will rise to circle your head and call your name
for I am the pale dome of straw
set up to Our Lady of the Craters
who flies a flag of France from the tip of her nose

things are looking up
it’s only the beak of another cockatoo
that can spread a blanket over my sunny mood
I remember I dropped my book
like the old revolver that rattles in my skull
that was what I did another time
before the chimney piece of unequal grace
as I spread beneath the pennies of your gaze
the coloured artichokes of an impure love
and all you could find to say
was “a broken clock can gather no daffodils”

there are often sounds of murder and decay
and the dull insistent rhythm of the sea
no rafters can reach me
my long fingers explore a narrow shell
like butter spread on the bottom of the screen
in the hope of an easy birth

a fugitive similarity
links all bodies to a castle by the sea
and there
they join hands and dance upon the sand
and only the fractured refrain