blind roger 43 / roger 17



on the edge of the chair

As if the soft cushion can support his current equilibrium

As if the soft cushion can break his fall

Reaches for a cup of tea

but can’t              just        reach

Has to feel around

-smooth laminex-gritty crust crumbs-flimsy paper plate- thin plastic cup (oops)

Tackle plastic cup

Misjudges and

loses the fight with the cup.

Cordial slu

rps do

wn the front of his shirt

Not that he would know

what colour his shirt was today anyway

Chest, however, is still warm and dry.

Katrina must have put a     napkin there

Rock      back

Rock      forth

Recognise Katrina’s gait                tha-thump

Reach – soft, light and feathery but slippery, her hair slides through fingers

Feel higher- rough felt and itchy prickly balls, perhaps pompoms. Felt is jaggered, inconsistent, like a tree branch. One conclusion. Christmas Antlers.

Hand is quicklybroughttoface

Breathe                                                deeply

Vanilla. Cinnamon. Nutmeg. Custard Tart. Honey.

This is Katrina.

Elvis, but-

voice pauses      awkwardly.

vibrato held for too long.

hollow sound.

No crackle.

No fuzz.

No, This Elvis is Not Real. Earlier, Elvis talked. Said my name. Definitely not the real Elvis.

Crying in the Chapel?

If it weren’t for the antlers,

Wouldn’t have known it was Christmas


balanced on the edge of gravity

teeters on the last hope of equilibrium

perches on the stinging, scalding metal of the see-saw

Clings to the rubber of the handle-bar for relief






but not far. Springs back up again.

Inertia pulls neck down, while violently lifting his body to the heavens.

Strong thighs     leap       off, into the sand pit.

Grit in shoes. Grit in undies. Grit in hair. Grit in eyes.

Rub eyes, inflamed.

Open.               To a Caribbean Blue sky

So cloudless you could see Saturn

If you tried.


Drink in the wholesome blue of the sky.

Dazed by a bright red tartan picnic rug

Rock      back

Rock      forth

Small boy with lime-green overalls. Overalls that have obviously seen a thousand and one paint balls.

Small boy has artistic skills.

Small boy has balance and courage. Those monkey bars have humiliated and defeated many a brave warrior.

Boy drops, hearing the barely audible call of his mother by the red tartan rug.

Head down,

sprint towards the boy,

swoop down,

lift up,

Size 4, mud-stained volleys fly up in a flurry of giggles. Hazel eyes stare and twinkle with mirth.

Pause                the live combat,

Nose to the air.

Woody, incensed, sharp and fragrant.

‘Tis the season to be back-burning.

Meaty, salty, sharp and fragrant.

‘Tis the season for family BBQ’s on a public griddle. (Entrust the hygiene of the entire extended family to a squirt of lemon juice on the hotplate before the feast).

This. This is Christmas.