Thursday, May 24, 2018

dubrovnik


City of cats, spackled by shells
firing the red roof-tiles black
chalk outlines the corpse of a city

risen again, swathed in stone and moated
scene of dragon battles staged
where tourists climb the sides of churches

children hang off bas relief fountains
and swarm, ride scooters through squares
dripping sweat and screaming for pasta;

synth sing-a-long at church, jeans
and bad haircuts, long dresses
cross the chest and shuffle behind pews.

Quiet in a vertical garden, sloping
down to the sea where cactus bulwarks
fortress the cliff against the waves

flecked in cinders, they pixelate a peace
that spreads across the Adriatic’s
azure solace, Croatia

maintains, embraced by octopus
split by former comrades, edge that
boomerangs Westward to Europe.

Monday, January 1, 2018

new year's sonnet


At turn of year, some doors are closed forever
while others open new on gleaming halls
in mansions bright; as prodigals we find
this welcome hearth unearned, yet still endeavour
to prove our worth.
                                       The gloom of winter falls
away before the flame of spring; tall pines
embroidered in fragrant buds bend to fawn
upon our hopes and teach how nature solves
the puzzles set to life. We read these signs
as affirmations: tracts that note the songs
of seasons past and clear the undergrowth
for blooms of May.
                                   A year to nurture time’s
long generations into future dawns
upon the hidden glades where saviours spawn.

Saturday, December 31, 2016

new year’s eve sonnet


It’s time to say goodbye again and cheer
the passing of another year, look back
in wonder, doubt, and momentary tears
along the stretch of paths and cul-de-sacs
we’ve travelled, sometimes slow and sometimes fast,
with fear or circumspection, some dismay
at times, reflecting on the die we cast
and cards we drew. Despite these harder days
we seem to muscle through, and find a way
to live again and turn our year from fall
to spring. Before the fire spends its final flame,
as clock ticks on it murmurs to us all:
remake the world to match your secret dreams
and seize the day in twenty seventeen!

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

the silencing of nozick


Conversation with a "philosopher":

What are you teaching this term?

Political philosophy.

Oh, what are you teaching?

The first half of the term is Rawls, the second half contemporary critiques of liberalism.

That sounds great—are you teaching Nozick at all?

No, I find when you teach Nozick, students just accept his criticisms and can't take Rawls seriously any more . . . .

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

illusive


Gazing in the shimmering pond, Alice thought she saw another world; dimly, past the rippled clouds, she could almost make out the face of another her, with bottomless liquorice eyes, and a downy tear dropping down from sculpted cheek to rivulet past Wednesday's best . . .

Friday, October 7, 2016

blocked by lothian buses

Deemed too dangerous, apparently . . . .