there’s always a reason

it’s not always the little rusted spring
that slipped off the governor
on the mower I borrowed

thinking Queensland (while in California)

mango moon
don’t go to sleep
I’m not finished with you


I haven’t posted in a while and found this among my haiku sketchings. Just something hot and sticky while I watch the mountains turn white here in Northern California.

A warm winter’s bank

I sit reading Snyder
on a cedar log skateboard

there’s a wattle tree
next to the river

I stand and go to it
to touch it’s yellow existence

and while i’m still stunned by it
being here in california

a man walking his dog asks
about the log skateboard

and I ask him about the wattle

he’s a landscaper
and doesn’t know the wattle’s name here

but knows there are very few
I tell him aboriginal tribes

favour the timber
for making boomerangs

and he asks again
about the cedar log

I made into a skateboard.

Regulations

Walk your Skateboard!

Umm…
          pardon?

Walk your board across the bridge!

I stop. Swap my ten month old daughter to my right arm
and kick the board to my other hand, call out
to my three sons on bikes to stop.
The uniform keeps walking but is looking back
knows I’m going to ask.

Sure. Umm bikes too?

No, bikes are fine.

Right, so, why must I
walk my skateboard
across this bridge?

It’s policy.

Yes, I’m sure it is.
Why, is it policy to walk my skateboard
across this bridge.

 It’s policy.

I stare at him.
Then check that my three boys haven’t already
crossed the bridge to explore the trails on the other side.
I look back at him, swap my daughter to the other arm
and lean the skateboard against myself.
He drops his head, steps a little closer to reduce any scene.

The glass panels
get broken by skateboards.

Right, thanks. I guess
the skaters who are
ollieing yeah? The type
without a baby in their arms?

I turn and walk my board and daughter
across the bridge.
We enjoy the ducks below
with their butts
in the air.

all impromptu and barefoot

after putting the bins out
on the road

I take my daughter in my arms
and walk the trails behind our place

because sunset
has activated
the birds

and she says    Oooh
as our eyes track a large dragonfly

around the oak
high over our heads

a woman walks by

cute baby

and I must admit
she looks like one
who’d put her head down

don’t make eye contact
with anyone out here on the trails

but a bloke with a baby
in his arms
enjoying sunset

and the baby saying   Oooh
at the birds

squirrelI’ve moved to northern California for a year or so. It’s been
a big move but my family and I love it. I’ll try to post some poems
and photos a bit more frequently but there’s just too much to do here!
Hope you’re very well, wherever you may be.

Love always
Andrew Phillips

Andrew

off colour

 

I’m painting the house
the wrong colour

just a smidge
too yellow-based myurrrk
instead of the blue-based green
I wanted

the next coat will cover it
but I’ve got to use up this 15 liters

and each brush stroke is deeply
unsatisfying

I look back at the last few hours
of weatherboard wall
wearing the wrong colour

too much early

I hand a pre-dawn pocket of coins over

her industrial estate face-for-the-boys

she’ll sell fifty of these paper wrapped breakfasts before 7

thinly sliced pig, fried chicken fetus on
finely-milled bleached wheat
yeast-mixed, overnight baked
and sliced
and soggy pan toasted
and sauced

and I wash it through me with
roasted-bean infused water

and feel human again

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