The Curve

A long slender branch
cut across your cheek
It left a swollen scratch.
Luminous pink with tiny beads of blood.

I traced your outline
on the pavement
with chalk.
You let your eyes go flat.
I let my mind go blank.

We filled your space with leaves
and clover flowers.
I snapped the branch and placed it
where your cheek was cut.
The curve of a short smile.

The second bus
goes across town.
It takes us past the shipyard
where your grandfather worked.
It takes us home.

Truth in Documents

the attitude is poisonous

that tilt of your head,
the hand on the table.

lift me from this pile
and stand me erect
burn the papers you cherish most

the ringlets of your hair
the cool purse of lips

shift the order
back to truth
if that suits you

or truth is not an order
in reality or even fiction
but just what suits you best

the skin tone
the eye colour
the curves and textures of implied surfaces
the thought of touch

the smell of sulphur.