Posted in Love


We got in early –
too early for the banks
9 a.m. in the days before
10 days in the wilderness – the southwest
rugged and beautiful and lonely
even by the standards of a rugged, beautiful, lonely country.
Left our packs at the bus station,
lighter – 29 kg on day 1
and lighter headed … we’d done it!
But, until the banks opened, no celebration –
two weeks of dried pasta and dehydrated vegetables
something else pleeeeease.
“What’s in kitty?” –
a handful of coins and soon to be extinct $2 note.

It was a 24-hour place
something between McDonald’s and KFC
not expensive ….. but even then …
“not enough for…
…… we could order some extras …”
We did the maths
1 coffee, 1 bread roll, 2 roast potatoes –
“each? Yup.”

The man on the till took the money,
said nothing –
only the price.
When he brought the food to the table
he moved quickly –
no words –
no eye contact.
Two coffees
two plates : three bread rolls six potatoes –





Most of my life has been spent on the bench, occasionally called into the game by extravagance or attenuation. Waiting has turned a loner into a recorder - nondescript and inconsequential, more not noticed than overlooked - the non-vantage point of children not yet considered old enough to understand. Orphaned Islands (Un)poetry is a lifetime of picking anecdotes up and not throwing them away. Stories collected like odds and ends placed in a box in the basement, the garage, the garden shed - uncertain as to what their use might be but knowing that one day there might be one.