Cowboy weather

Go dancing with no partner.
Go sailing with no wind.

Throw into the night nothing but hot possibilities with strangers.
Strap a pair of boots to wheels and roll down the streets like you imagined you could when you had an office job and nothing else felt real. 

Sweat lemonade in a dark room with a slow fan, swimming only in your sleep.
Lie back in the dirt of the park with the stoners and ciggie butts so the siesta can steal your time.

Meet me in the afternoon in this cowboy weather -
the morning part of the evening when the sun starts to split but the heat’s still dripping.

We’ll sit on top the Seven Tits and skull tinto while the wild flowers grow out underneath us,
while the sky melts into this city you’ve loved forever but never seen before.

Walk home late to Lavapies,
throw pistols at the wind and forget everything for a second -
it’s dark now. Don’t let anything else keep you up.

Green grief

The day after I meet Joan for lunch the rainforest goes into its 16th day of burning. It keeps burning and there’s nothing we can do about it but there’s everything too.
Later that day I message her and say - that red line roaring into the forest - I can’t get it out of my mind. I can’t sleep at night.
The grief is real, she says. It’s important to feel it.

Yearnings from Peretola Airport

A place for my books to live
Someone to watch my things while I get water at the airport
A feeling that success isn’t a mirage or a long distance dream but an ocean you can make yourself and swim in
Not having to work on the floor of everywhere I put my bag down but some how still having enough money to live
Gluten free food widely available wherever I go (that’s not one of those god damned orange almond cake at 7.30 in the morning)
A tattoo sleeve I could trial for a month and give back at the end
Better French so I can be both a cool girl and continue my path to cultural enlightenment
A dog
A life infrastructure to house said dog
A European passport without a shotgun wedding to a Northern Hemispherian stranger
IRD to forget who I am
Someone here alongside me tonight to play this game with

Tamraght

I’m not one for travel poems because
they remind me

of when friends make you watch their home
videos from when they were a kid. Or

when they get back from holiday and
want to show you a PowerPoint

of all the places they’ve been.

I don’t care. I wasn’t there. Roll me in a rug
and throw me in the sea already.

But tonight I lay on a rooftop under a Moroccan sky,
the sun eating the sea until

everything became tangerine. Three men below
started up the kamenjah and began to sing.

Two cats stopped fighting and folded into my lap.
The woman in the small store I buy nectarines

from each day - she was there too. This sky, she
says, it’s like the days themselves -

Each time different. Each time the same.

Tamraght -
this shitty little town under the hill

with a beach break and pink light that vibrates
something special.

I guess you had to be there. I guess
you had to see it to believe it.

Annual Leave

You want a life that’s yours.
Something you can wrap your

arms around. Leave
from. Return to. Feel forever.

You want this life that makes
people say,

Wow nice life living -
I want it -

how’d you get
it?

But the truth is
you already had it,

it was already there.
It’s the things you

didn’t even think of - your
keys that turn into locks,

the way they click open
your life each morning

and close it down at night.
Small things. Often invisible.

The dreams
you have swimming

around in your head and those
moments in between.

The buzzing of your phone
that says

someone is wanting you.
The way the light around you

moves. The way it
changes. The way

you do. The way
everything inevitably

does. Everything, all
of it, you have it all.

Sometimes it feels like it’s
everything. And

sometimes it feels like
nothing at all.

London Train notes

Someone silently weeping next to me.
Someone writing a love letter celebrating 12 years together all in caps.
The seventh time today someone has stepped into this carriage in that leopard print skirt.
A trendy 70 something woman carrying a conviction I could only ever dream of.
A sad-looking couple not looking at each other for the whole 37 minutes.
An unstylish mother applying impeccable winged eyeliner, her 13-year-old daughter asking how she first fell in love.
Someone’s phone buzzing next to me and they’re writing back,
Everything is absolutely fine