moment you hear it slip

from the doctor's mouth —

that medical journey

with foreboding survivors,

you turn from words

to silence, put your back

to the wind, unpack the clock arms.

you throw your hands round life's

cohesion, the oil spills in its bag.

you taste the acid metal of the rain.

night is a lid grieving

on light. stalks of shadows

sprout from pages

that once stilled your goldmines,

the eucalyptus leaves rust

to gold in the dew.

youth comes running to you

like broken toys. you binge on

silence, crease your fingers

to mimic the dimming stars.

you say nothing when in fact

you talk loud, & your silence

stretches above the gale.

dreaming of home, i used

to think of isawuru

the luscious greens & gleams

that warmed your heart to me;

the way your smiles played

to your cheeks, soaked to bones,

when we mocked the nightingales,

& lifted the flowers in the air.

i wonder if those days now mean

anything to you, mother, as you

nurture the ache in your throat,

the tests & tumour life, the prognosis

where the doctor left his goodbye note.